From “Bench to Bedside” in a Community Context

Moving from evidence-based practice to community implementation

Charles Drum MPA, JD, PhD, Tom Seekins, PhD, and Sara Rainer

University of New Hampshire, University of Montana


  • The Community Engagement Initiative (CEI) Knowledge Transfer Research Project, explores the adoption and use of an evidence-based process in real world settings. The CEI project advances the evidentiary basis of an earlier research project, the Community Engagement Evaluation (CEE).
  • Knowledge translation (KT) reflects the process of moving research finding to real-world applications.
  • The ultimate purpose of KT is both the transfer and subsequent use of knowledge.


  • Investigate the KT process by evaluating the impact of varying levels of technical assistance given to communities so that they can implement the CEI.
  • Determine the degree to which the CEI’s process can be used to remove barriers to participation in an area in addition to healthcare – in this case, recreation.

Research Questions

  1. How many identified barriers will be resolved within the nine-month time frame?
  2. Will the removal of local barriers result in increased access to health care and recreational opportunities?
  3. Will communities receiving different levels of assistance vary in identifying and resolving community barriers?
  4. Will communities change the CEI process when they implement under different levels of assistance?

Project Design

  • Pilot project using a cluster randomized controlled trial with equivalent materials design in 8 communities (4 in NH, 4 in MT).
  • Pre-Post data at the levels of program adoption and implementation, community engagement process, environmental and systems change, and individual participation.

Community Participation Survey: pre-post survey to assess the quality of one’s participation and the usability of community sites.

  • Three levels of KT assistance:
    • Minimal KT: how-to-guide and financial assistance
    • Moderate KT: minimal + training
    • Intensive KT: moderate + onsite technical assistance

Preliminary Findings

  • First round of community meetings held in 7/8 communities; 104 participants (people with disabilities, family members, and friends).
  • Changes to the process: communities receiving minimal KT assistance are more likely to change the CEI process.
  • Importance of local knowledge: communities with a local expert report more success recruiting CEI participants.

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The contents of this poster were developed under a grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90RT5015). NIDILRR is a Center within the Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The contents of this website do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, or HHS, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.