A myriad of factors influencing the implementation of transitional care innovations: a scoping review

A. Fakha*, L. Groenvynck, B. de Boer, T. van Achterberg, J. Hamers, H. Verbeek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal(Systematic) Review article peer-review

5 Citations (Web of Science)


Background Care transitions of older persons between multiple care settings are frequently hampered by various issues such as discontinuous care delivery or poor information transfer among healthcare providers. Therefore, several innovations have been developed to optimize transitional care (TC). This review aims to identify which factors influence the implementation of TC innovations. Methods As part of TRANS-SENIOR, an international innovative training and research network focusing on enhancing or avoiding care transitions, a scoping review was conducted. The five stages of the Arksey and O'Malley framework were followed. PubMed/MEDLINE, EMBASE, and CINAHL were searched, and eligible studies published between years 2000 and 2020 were retrieved. Data were extracted from the included studies and mapped to the domains and constructs of the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR) and Care Transitions Framework (CTF). Results Of 1537 studies identified, 21 were included. Twenty different TC innovations were covered and aimed at improving or preventing transitions between multiple care settings, the majority focused on transitions from hospital to home. Key components of the innovations encompassed transition nurses, teach-back methods, follow-up home visits, partnerships with community services, and transfer units. Twenty-five prominent implementation factors (seven barriers, seven facilitators, and eleven factors with equivalent hindering/facilitating influence) were shown to affect the implementation of TC innovations. Low organizational readiness for implementation and the overall implementation climate were topmost hindering factors. Similarly, failing to target the right population group was commonly reported as a major barrier. Moreover, the presence of skilled users but with restricted knowledge and mixed attitudes about the innovation impeded its implementation. Among the eminent enabling factors, a high-perceived advantage of the innovation by staff, along with encouraging transition roles, and a continuous monitoring process facilitated the implementation of several innovations. Other important factors were a high degree of organizational networks, engaging activities, and culture; these factors had an almost equivalent hindering/facilitating influence. Conclusions Addressing the right target population and instituting transition roles in care settings appear to be specific factors to consider during the implementation of TC innovations. Long-term care settings should simultaneously emphasize their organizational readiness for implementation and change, in order to improve transitional care through innovations.
Original languageEnglish
Article number21
Number of pages24
JournalImplementation science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2021


  • care transitions
  • factors
  • implementation
  • innovation
  • long-term care
  • older persons
  • transitional care
  • Care transitions
  • Factors
  • Older persons
  • Implementation
  • Long-term care
  • Transitional care
  • Innovation

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