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Taxonomy of approaches to developing interventions to improve health: a systematic methods overview

Taxonomy of approaches to developing interventions to improve health: a systematic methods overview
Taxonomy of approaches to developing interventions to improve health: a systematic methods overview

Background

Interventions need to be developed prior to the feasibility and piloting phase of a study. There are a variety of published approaches to developing interventions, programmes or innovations to improve health. Identifying different types of approach, and synthesising the range of actions taken within this endeavour, can inform future intervention development.


Methods

This study is a systematic methods overview of approaches to intervention development. Approaches were considered for inclusion if they described how to develop or adapt an intervention in a book, website or journal article published after 2007, or were cited in a primary research study reporting the development of a specific intervention published in 2015 or 2016. Approaches were read, a taxonomy of approaches was developed and the range of actions taken across different approaches were synthesised.


Results

Eight categories of approach to intervention development were identified. (1) Partnership, where people who will use the intervention participate equally with the research team in decision-making about the intervention throughout the development process. (2) Target population-centred, where the intervention is based on the views and actions of the people who will use it. (3) Evidence and theory-based, where the intervention is based on published research evidence and existing theories. (4) Implementation-based, where the intervention is developed with attention to ensuring it will be used in the real world. (5) Efficiency-based, where components of an intervention are tested using experimental designs to select components which will optimise efficiency. (6) Stepped or phased, where interventions are developed with an emphasis on following a systematic set of processes. (7) Intervention-specific, where an approach is constructed for a specific type of intervention. (8) Combination, where existing approaches to intervention development are formally combined. The actions from approaches in all eight categories were synthesised to identify 18 actions to consider when developing interventions.


Conclusions

This overview of approaches to intervention development can help researchers to understand the variety of existing approaches, and to understand the range of possible actions involved in intervention development, prior to assessing feasibility or piloting the intervention. Findings from this overview will contribute to future guidance on intervention development.
2055-5784
O'Cathain, Alicia
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Croot, Liz
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Sworn, Katie
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Duncan, Edward A.S.
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Rousseau, Nikki
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Turner, Katrina
c76bab80-e780-4c3e-ab29-88fbfd914bad
Yardley, Lucy
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Hoddinott, Pat
d0ad946c-3bc1-4a35-b8fc-4fe7efc3d834
O'Cathain, Alicia
2fa113fb-2028-4cfb-84e2-2c2fdacce907
Croot, Liz
6a7122e5-5491-4c4a-94f7-6be24d84f3a9
Sworn, Katie
2bf35fd4-8c43-4cee-b4a6-68e23dd8e123
Duncan, Edward A.S.
fb1ca430-1a49-4822-9315-b3bef4f78d01
Rousseau, Nikki
4ca285a5-911a-4f74-908f-a5f82bf45c18
Turner, Katrina
c76bab80-e780-4c3e-ab29-88fbfd914bad
Yardley, Lucy
64be42c4-511d-484d-abaa-f8813452a22e
Hoddinott, Pat
d0ad946c-3bc1-4a35-b8fc-4fe7efc3d834

O'Cathain, Alicia, Croot, Liz, Sworn, Katie, Duncan, Edward A.S., Rousseau, Nikki, Turner, Katrina, Yardley, Lucy and Hoddinott, Pat (2019) Taxonomy of approaches to developing interventions to improve health: a systematic methods overview. Pilot and Feasibility Studies, 5. (doi:10.1186/s40814-019-0425-6).

Record type: Article

Abstract


Background

Interventions need to be developed prior to the feasibility and piloting phase of a study. There are a variety of published approaches to developing interventions, programmes or innovations to improve health. Identifying different types of approach, and synthesising the range of actions taken within this endeavour, can inform future intervention development.


Methods

This study is a systematic methods overview of approaches to intervention development. Approaches were considered for inclusion if they described how to develop or adapt an intervention in a book, website or journal article published after 2007, or were cited in a primary research study reporting the development of a specific intervention published in 2015 or 2016. Approaches were read, a taxonomy of approaches was developed and the range of actions taken across different approaches were synthesised.


Results

Eight categories of approach to intervention development were identified. (1) Partnership, where people who will use the intervention participate equally with the research team in decision-making about the intervention throughout the development process. (2) Target population-centred, where the intervention is based on the views and actions of the people who will use it. (3) Evidence and theory-based, where the intervention is based on published research evidence and existing theories. (4) Implementation-based, where the intervention is developed with attention to ensuring it will be used in the real world. (5) Efficiency-based, where components of an intervention are tested using experimental designs to select components which will optimise efficiency. (6) Stepped or phased, where interventions are developed with an emphasis on following a systematic set of processes. (7) Intervention-specific, where an approach is constructed for a specific type of intervention. (8) Combination, where existing approaches to intervention development are formally combined. The actions from approaches in all eight categories were synthesised to identify 18 actions to consider when developing interventions.


Conclusions

This overview of approaches to intervention development can help researchers to understand the variety of existing approaches, and to understand the range of possible actions involved in intervention development, prior to assessing feasibility or piloting the intervention. Findings from this overview will contribute to future guidance on intervention development.

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s40814-019-0425-6 - Version of Record
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 28 February 2019
Published date: 12 March 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 431753
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/431753
ISSN: 2055-5784
PURE UUID: f2ba8086-d791-49a4-a6d3-7464efce2ebb
ORCID for Lucy Yardley: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3853-883X

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Date deposited: 14 Jun 2019 16:30
Last modified: 19 Jun 2019 00:38

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Contributors

Author: Alicia O'Cathain
Author: Liz Croot
Author: Katie Sworn
Author: Edward A.S. Duncan
Author: Nikki Rousseau
Author: Katrina Turner
Author: Lucy Yardley ORCID iD
Author: Pat Hoddinott

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