Development and testing of an implementation strategy for a complex housing intervention: protocol for a mixed methods study

Dennis P. Watson, Jeani Young, Emily Ahonen, Huiping Xu, Macey Henderson, Valery Shuman, Randi Tolliver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: There is currently a lack of scientifically designed and tested implementation strategies. Such strategies are particularly important for highly complex interventions that require coordination between multiple parts to be successful. This paper presents a protocol for the development and testing of an implementation strategy for a complex intervention known as the Housing First model (HFM). Housing First is an evidence-based practice for chronically homeless individuals demonstrated to significantly improve a number of outcomes.

METHODS/DESIGN: Drawing on practices demonstrated to be useful in implementation and e-learning theory, our team is currently adapting a face-to-face implementation strategy so that it can be delivered over a distance. Research activities will be divided between Chicago and Central Indiana, two areas with significantly different barriers to HFM implementation. Ten housing providers (five from Chicago and five from Indiana) will be recruited to conduct an alpha test of each of four e-learning modules as they are developed. Providers will be requested to keep a detailed log of their experience completing the modules and participate in one of two focus groups. After refining the modules based on alpha test results, we will test the strategy among a sample of four housing organizations (two from Chicago and two from Indiana). We will collect and analyze both qualitative and quantitative data from administration and staff. Measures of interest include causal factors affecting implementation, training outcomes, and implementation outcomes.

DISCUSSION: This project is an important first step in the development of an evidence-based implementation strategy to increase scalability and impact of the HFM. The project also has strong potential to increase limited scientific knowledge regarding implementation strategies in general.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)138
Number of pages1
JournalImplementation science : IS
StatePublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Health Informatics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Development and testing of an implementation strategy for a complex housing intervention: protocol for a mixed methods study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this