Training and support for the role of facilitator in implementation of innovations in health and community care: a scoping review protocol

Malin Tistad, Anna Bergström, Marie Elf, Leif Eriksson, Catharina Gustavsson, Camilla Göras, Gill Harvey, Ann Sofie Källberg, Ann Rudman, Maria Unbeck, Lars Wallin

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Background: Implementing and sustaining innovations in clinical practice, such as evidence-based practices, programmes, and policies, is frequently described as challenging. Facilitation as a strategy for supporting implementation requires a facilitator, i.e. an individual with a designated role to support the implementation process. A growing number of studies report that facilitation can help tackle the challenges in implementation efforts. To optimise the potential contribution of facilitation as a strategy to improve the implementation of new practices, there is a need to enhance understanding about what training and support is required for individuals in the facilitator role. 

The objective of this scoping review is to map how facilitators have been trained for, and supported in, the facilitator role in implementation studies in health and community care. Specifically, the review aims to examine what is reported on training and support of facilitators in terms of learning outcomes, content, dose, mode of delivery, learning activities, and qualifications of the trainers and how the facilitators perceive training and support. 

Methods: This scoping review will follow the guidance of the Joanna Briggs Institute and the PRISMA Extension for Scoping Review checklist. We will include articles in which (a) facilitation is deployed as an implementation strategy, with identified facilitator roles targeting staff and managers, to support the implementation of specified innovations in health or community care, and (b) training and/or support of facilitators is reported. We will exclude articles where facilitation is directed to education or training in specific clinical procedures or if facilitation supports the implementation of general quality improvement systems. All types of peer-reviewed studies and study protocols published in English will be included. A systematic search will be performed in MEDLINE (Ovid), Embase (, Web of Science Core Collection, and CINAHL (Ebsco). 

Discussion: The proposed scoping review will provide a systematic mapping of the literature on the training and support of implementation facilitators and contribute useful knowledge within the field of implementation science to inform future facilitation initiatives. Systematic review registration: Registered at Open Science Framework (registration

Original languageEnglish
Article number15
Number of pages7
JournalSystematic Reviews
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jan 2023


  • Community care
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Facilitation
  • Facilitator
  • Healthcare services
  • i-PARIHS
  • Implementation science
  • Supervision
  • Support
  • Training


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