Developing the Agile Implementation Playbook for Integrating Evidence-Based Health Care Services into Clinical Practice

Malaz A. Boustani, Marjolein A. Van Der Marck, Nadia Adams, Jose M. Azar, Richard J. Holden, Horst C. Vollmar, Sophia Wang, Christopher Williams, Catherine Alder, Shelley Suarez, Babar Khan, Ben Zarzaur, Nicole R. Fowler, Ashley Overley, Craig A. Solid, Alfonso Gatmaitan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Problem Despite the more than $32 billion the National Institutes of Health has invested annually, evidence-based health care services are not reliably implemented, sustained, or distributed in health care delivery organizations, resulting in suboptimal care and patient harm. New organizational approaches and frameworks that reflect the complex nature of health care systems are needed to achieve this goal. Approach To guide the implementation of evidence-based health care services at their institution, the authors used a number of behavioral theories and frameworks to develop the Agile Implementation (AI) Playbook, which was finalized in 2015. The AI Playbook leverages these theories in an integrated approach to selecting an evidence-based health care service to meet a specific opportunity, rapidly implementing the service, evaluating its fidelity and impact, and sustaining and scaling up the service across health care delivery organizations. The AI Playbook includes an interconnected eight-step cycle: (1) identify opportunities; (2) identify evidence-based health care services; (3) develop evaluation and termination plans; (4) assemble a team to develop a minimally viable service; (5) perform implementation sprints; (6) monitor implementation performance; (7) monitor whole system performance; and (8) develop a minimally standardized operating procedure. Outcomes The AI Playbook has helped to improve care and clinical outcomes for intensive care unit survivors and is being used to train clinicians and scientists in AI to be quality improvement advisors. Next Steps The authors plan to continue disseminating the details of the AI Playbook and illustrating how health care delivery organizations can successfully leverage it.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)556-561
Number of pages6
JournalAcademic Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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