I’m a Research Fellow on the Mental Health Implementation Network project which supports the delivery of evidence based mental health interventions in England. More specifically, I’ll be working with the team to evaluate the impact of carefully selected interventions with the aim of scaling up. Previously, I was a project manager and postdoctoral researcher at the department of Psychiatry at Oxford University, where I worked on the MindKind Study, and the OxWell School Mental Health Survey looking at factors which directly affect young people’s mental health in their everyday lives. My research so far has largely focused on youth mental health both globally and more locally within the UK, working on interventions aimed at children and young people’s mental health.
A cross-disciplinary consortium called the Mental Health Implementation Network (MHIN) with key stakeholders was established in England in 2020 implementing mental health interventions in 6 regions of England. Led by local Applied Research Collaborations and their partners. The aim of the present study is twofold: to develop an overarching evaluation strategy for programme level and site level evaluations of MHIN, and b) programme wide evaluations which focuses on the relational work between prioritisation and implementation, including the development of sustainability constructs linked with the implementation support packages at each sites.
The study is underpinned by an embedded mixed method approach . Data collection methods include observations, expert consultations, document analysis, structured questionnaire and semi structured interviews with key stakeholders encompassing the public and local communities, multi-sector health and care providers, commissioners, government, NGO, clinical, managerial, commissioning, academic and other partners. Overall the Exploration, Preparation, Implementation, Sustainment (EPIS) framework  is used to understand and support the implementation process at the six delivery sites. Evaluation strategy was developed using expert consultations and document analysis.
Data is currently analysed using different qualitative approaches including narrative synthesis and framework analysis. We will share emerging themes from an ongoing analyses; these are centred around the relations between stakeholders, the resources needed for setting up a priority network and regional vs national implication of setting up a network. Further findings include the negotiations recorded at site activities, and local evaluation of the tailored implementation support for the sites.
The findings from MHIN stakeholders in this process to support a wide variety of projects and ARC sites will provide insightful information relating to the factors promoting or inhibiting implementation from different stakeholder perspectives. This could be extended beyond the specific project and be useful for implementation researchers and implementation practitioners.