Our communities continue to experience undue sickness because of preventable and treatable infectious diseases. The Infectious Disease – Dissemination and Implementation Science (IDDI) Initiative is designed to cultivate implementation science research in infectious disease to meaningfully improve evidence-based prevention and treatment of infectious diseases in the St. Louis Region and beyond.
We endeavor to promote implementation science within three areas of infectious disease research and practice where WashU exhibits innovation and excellence:
Sexually Transmitted Infections & HIV
Missouri and the St. Louis Region experience a disproportionate burden of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV despite numerous evidence-based prevention and treatment approaches. Furthermore, many communities are differentially impacted by these illnesses because of intersection with a number of other health and social issues such as mental health, stigma and poverty. By encouraging a better understanding of how best to implement evidence-based interventions addressing STIs and HIV, we seek to ensure better and more equitable health outcomes for St. Louis Communities impacted by STIs and HIV.
The rapid development of vaccines and effective treatment combined with a quickly evolving epidemic and rampant community mistrust has led to a failure of many communities to benefit from these potentially life-saving interventions. We will promote the application of implementation science, which explicitly considers how to encourage uptake of emerging science, to maximize the value of these interventions locally and globally.
Antimicrobial resistance is an emerging health crisis requiring the judicious use of antibiotics and other types of antimicrobials in both public and clinical settings through antimicrobial stewardship. However, there are very few evidence-based strategies to reduce and appropriately use antimicrobials. Simultaneously de-implementation, or the reduction of interventions that are not beneficial, is an emerging area of implementation science. We intend to develop both the field of de-implementation and antimicrobial stewardship to ensure the continued effectiveness of interventions to treat infectious disease.
In addition, we expect to identify additional areas of interest to the WashU research community. IDDI will support a number of activities toward this goal including grant development support, implementation science training, pilot program funding, activities fostering a research community and collaboration, and promoting the integration of implementation science and infectious disease nationally.
We have a special call for applications related to implementation science and infectious disease Center for Dissemination & Implementation Pilot Awards.
Request for input
We are seeking input from the WashU research community on opportunities to strengthen the application of implementation science in infectious disease. If you have an interest in learning more about IDDI or would like to share an idea, please contact Ginger McKay.
Putting the dissemination and implementation in infectious disease
Published in Clinical Infectious Diseases and authored by Dr. Jason Burnham and co-authored by Drs. Geng, Colditz and McKay, this article argues the utility of implementation science for infectious disease, describes common implementation science concepts, and gives examples of how they might be applied.
IDDI is led by Ginger Mckay, PhD through the Center for Dissemination & implementation at the Institute for Public Health with significant support from the Brown School.
Dr. McKay is a research assistant professor at the Brown School. View her faculty scholar profile.