This project is under way, and will run until December 2020.

  • Being run by the Interdisciplinary Research in Health Sciences (IRIHS) group at the University of Oxford.
  • Will involve the co-design of electronic versions of the NASSS-CAT tools to support implementation and evaluation of digital health projects, such as virtual consultations.
  • The electronic tools will be empirically piloted with stakeholders in ongoing case studies to understand, reduce and respond to complexity in technology projects.

This Evidence into Practice project by the University of Oxford will involve the production of a set of practical digital tools to support the implementation and evaluation of digital health projects, such as virtual consulting.

Health technology projects are complex and characterised by multiple interdependencies. The NASSS (non-adoption, abandonment and challenges to scale-up, spread, sustainability) framework allows researchers to surface and explain the complexity of technology-supported change. It consists of six domains: the condition or illness, the technology, the value proposition, the adopter system, the organisation(s), and the wider system. A seventh cross-cutting domain considers interdependencies and emergence over time.

Building on the NASSS framework and a planning tool (CAT), the project team has developed a suite of practical tools (NASSS-CAT). These can be used for different purposes, for example when deciding to invest in a technology, to guide project management or to evaluate implementation success.

Four NASSS-CAT tools will be converted to electronic format, with the ability to aggregate and visualise data and link to a range of external resources. These electronic tools will be co-designed with stakeholders to enhance usability and relevance to practice. They will be empirically piloted in ongoing case studies, including to support the scale-up of virtual consultations across the NHS as part of a Scaling Up Improvement project led by Barts Health NHS Trust.

The tools will be made available for use by implementation teams, policy makers, researchers and patient advocacy groups. An online community of NASSS-CAT users will support ongoing learning. Other outputs will include academic and conference papers, policy briefings, talks and resources for public audiences, and industry engagement.

Contact details

For more information, please contact Professor Trisha Greenhalgh, Professor of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford.

About this programme


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