Disseminating findings from the Researching Older Adults’ Repositioning (ROAR) study through innovative means



  • Emma Schultz 
    Undergraduate student

By 2019, the senior population will increase by 20 percent in Kamloops; this outpaces the expected general population increase of 4.8 percent (Interior Health, 2014). This change has forced a need to re-examine the structure and delivery of healthcare services in BC’s central interior. In response, Interior Health (IH) is undergoing a system change to enhance the delivery of primary and community care for frail older adults and those with complex chronic conditions. This “repositioning” or restructuring of healthcare services is anticipated to provide comprehensive and effective community based care for clients.

Since evidence-informed practice in healthcare must include client preferences (DiCenso, Guyatt & Ciliska, 2005), there is an urgent need to consult service users to guide the direction of IH’s decisions on the repositioning of older adults within BC’s central interior. Supported by an IH Evidence-Informed Practice Challenge grant (2016 – 2017), this ROAR (Researching Older Adults Repositioning) study engaged older adults (from Kamloops and nine surrounding rural and remote communities) in research and enabled them to share views on primary and community care in BC’s interior and the repositioning work undertaken by IH.

Taking place over the next year, the TRiP (Translating ROAR into Practice) project is an integrated knowledge translation (iKT) process that will enable the engagement of IH staff (as decision-makers and knowledge users) and older adults (as service users and research participants) in interpreting research findings from the ROAR study. One of the iKT strategies for this project is to hold a summit where study participants and knowledge users, along with representatives from key seniors and/or patient advocacy groups, will work together to develop a plan to ensure findings from the ROAR study effectively make their way into practice at IH.

This award will go towards a dissemination scheme to complement the TRiP project. As part of the proposed scheme, dissemination tools will be developed to make research users aware of the ROAR study findings within IH, BC and beyond. ROAR findings will be shared through publication in an open-access journal and presentations at local venues, and one regional or national aging-related conference.