Implementation Science Research in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine

The Excellence in Pediatric Implementation Science (ECLIPSE) for the Pediatric Acute Lung Injury and Sepsis Investigators (PALISI) Network

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: Delay or failure to consistently adopt evidence-based or consensus-based best practices into routine clinical care is common, including for patients in the PICU. PICU patients can fail to receive potentially beneficial diagnostic or therapeutic interventions, worsening the burden of illness and injury during critical illness. Implementation science (IS) has emerged to systematically address this problem, but its use of in the PICU has been limited to date. We therefore present a conceptual and methodologic overview of IS for the pediatric intensivist. DESIGN: The members of Excellence in Pediatric Implementation Science (ECLIPSE; part of the Pediatric Acute Lung Injury and Sepsis Investigators Network) represent multi-institutional expertise in the use of IS in the PICU. This narrative review reflects the collective knowledge and perspective of the ECLIPSE group about why IS can benefit PICU patients, how to distinguish IS from quality improvement (QI), and how to evaluate an IS article. RESULTS: IS requires a shift in one's thinking, away from questions and outcomes that define traditional clinical or translational research, including QI. Instead, in the IS rather than the QI literature, the terminology, definitions, and language differs by specifically focusing on relative importance of generalizable knowledge, as well as aspects of study design, scale, and timeframe over which the investigations occur. CONCLUSIONS: Research in pediatric critical care practice must acknowledge the limitations and potential for patient harm that may result from a failure to implement evidence-based or professionals' consensus-based practices. IS represents an innovative, pragmatic, and increasingly popular approach that our field must readily embrace in order to improve our ability to care for critically ill children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)943-951
Number of pages9
JournalPediatric Critical Care Medicine
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2023


  • implementation science
  • methodology
  • outcomes
  • pediatric critical care medicine
  • quality
  • safety


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