Table 1: Definition of implementation outcomes
Outcomes Definition
Acceptability The perception among implementation stakeholders that a given treatment, service, practice or innovation is agreeable, palatable, or satisfactory.
Adoption The intention, initial decision or action to try/employ an innovation or evidence-based practice. Adoption also may be referred to as “uptake”.
Appropriateness The perceived fit, relevance or compatibility of the innovation or evidence based practice for a given practice setting, provider or consumer; and/or perceived fit of the innovation to address a particular issue or problem. “Appropriateness” is conceptually similar to “acceptability”.
Cost The cost impact of an implementation effort. Implementation costs vary according to the complexity of three components: the intervention, the implementation strategy, and the setting(s).
Feasibility The extent to which a new treatment or an innovation, can be successfully used or carried out in a given agency or setting.
Fidelity The degree to which an intervention was implemented as it was prescribed in the original protocol or as it was intended by the programme developers.
Penetration The integration of a practice within a service setting and its sub-systems. Penetration can be calculated in terms of the number of providers who deliver a given service or treatment, divided by the total number of providers trained in or expected to deliver the service.
Sustainability The extent to which a newly implemented intervention is maintained or institutionalized within a service setting’s ongoing, stable operations. There are three stages that determine institutionalization: 1) passage (a single event such as transition from temporary to permanent funding); 2) cycle or routine (i.e. repetitive reinforcement of the importance of the evidence-based intervention through inclusion in organizational or community procedures and behaviours, such as the annual budget and evaluation criteria); and 3) niche saturation (the extent to which an evidence-based intervention is integrated into all sub-systems of an organization).

Adapted from Proctor et al (2011)