Objectives: The implementation of new health services is a complex process. This study investigated the first phase of the adaptive implementation of the Dutch Meeting Centres Support Programme (MCSP) for people with dementia and their carers in three European countries (Italy, Poland, the UK) within the JPND-MEETINGDEM project. Anticipated and experienced factors influencing the implementation, and the efficacy of the implementation process, were investigated. Findings were compared with previous research in the Netherlands.
Method: A qualitative multiple case study design was applied. Checklist on anticipated facilitators and barriers to the implementation and semi-structured interview were completed by stakeholders, respectively at the end and at the beginning of the preparation phase.
Results: Overall, few differences between countries were founded. Facilitators for all countries were: added value of MCSP matching needs of the target group, evidence of effectiveness of MCSP, enthusiasm of stakeholders. General barriers were: competition with existing care and welfare organizations and scarce funding. Some countries experienced improved collaborations, others had difficulties finding a socially integrated location for MCSP. The step-by-step implementation method proved efficacious.
Conclusion: These insights into factors influencing the implementation of MCSP in three European countries and the efficacy of the step-by-step preparation may aid further implementation of MCSP in Europe.
Keywords: Implementation; combined support for people with dementia and caregivers; dementia; process analysis; psychosocial interventions.