207726 Disseminating Health Literacy Tools for Pharmacies: The Utility of Rogers' Diffusion of Innovations Theory

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Sarah J. Shoemaker, PharmD, PhD , Health Policy Practice, Abt Associates Inc., Cambridge, MA
Objectives: To describe how Rogers' Diffusion of Innovations theory can inform dissemination strategies for pharmacy quality improvement tools. To illustrate how the theory informed the distribution of health literacy tools for pharmacy. To assess the success of the dissemination efforts.

Methods: AHRQ has supported the creation of a suite of health literacy tools for pharmacy, and is now interested in the diffusion and dissemination of the tools to ultimately facilitate pharmacists' and pharmacies' adoption and implementation of the tools into everyday practice.

Understanding diffusion and how best to disseminate tools can be comprehensively understood through Rogers' (2003) Diffusion of Innovations theory, which was used to tailor the dissemination approaches for health literacy tools for pharmacies.

Consequently, the dissemination efforts include a mix of strategies that reflect the different stages on the adoption-decision continuum. The dissemination will include mass distribution of an announcement to all retail pharmacies and tailored announcements in different pharmacy association publications. Additionally, targeted, persuasive messages in a letter accompanying copies of the tools will be sent to pharmacy chain decision-makers (i.e., Vice Presidents of Pharmacy Operations). Also, pharmacy faculty members interested in health literacy and likely to be “innovators,” will be engaged to use the tools in their classrooms. Lastly, a Pharmacy Health Literacy Center website will provide pharmacists and pharmacy stakeholders the information necessary to consider adopting the tools and resources to encourage implementation. The website will also consist of a discussion board for pharmacists to communicate with one another about their experiences with the health literacy tools.

The various dissemination efforts will be conducted in the first-half of 2009 and completed by September 2009. The different dissemination strategies will be staggered to allow for assessment of each strategy.

Results: The circulation of the various pharmacy publications will be used to assess the reach of the announcements; return receipt of the mailings to chain decision-makers will assess that strategy. Additionally, the website tracking measures will be used to assess the reach and activity associated with each of the dissemination publications or efforts, since the dissemination strategies will be executed in a staggered manner. The website measures will include: visits, page views, pages viewed per visit, bounce rate, average time on website, traffic sources, countries/territories website visitors are located, as well as timelines illustrating the number of visits, number of visitors, traffics sources and website page visits by date.

Learning Objectives:
To demonstrate how Rogers’ Diffusion of Innovations theory informed dissemination strategies for pharmacy health literacy tools.

Keywords: Pharmacies, Health Literacy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a PharmD and PhD. I have presented at numerous pharmacy conferences and research conferences (American Eval Assoc & AcademyHealth). I have published in peer-reviewed pharmacy journals.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.