Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version



Treichler et al. BMC Health Services Research (2022) 22:1543


Open access.


Background: Adaptation of interventions is inevitable during translation to new populations or settings. Systematic approach to adaptation can ensure that fidelity to core functions of the intervention are preserved while optimizing implementation feasibility and effectiveness for the local context. In this study, we used an iterative, mixed methods, and stakeholder-engaged process to systematically adapt Collaborative Decision Skills Training for Veterans with psychosis currently participating in VA Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Centers.

Methods: A modified approach to Intervention Mapping (IM-Adapt) guided the adaptation process. An Adaptation Resource Team of five Veterans, two VA clinicians, and four researchers was formed. The Adaptation Resource Team engaged in an iterative process of identifying and completing adaptations including individual qualitative interviews, group meetings, and post-meeting surveys. Qualitative interviews were analyzed using rapid matrix analysis. We used the modified, RE-AIM enriched expanded Framework for Reporting Adaptations and Modifications to Evidence-based interventions (FRAME) to document adaptations. Additional constructs included adaptation size and scope; implementation of planned adaptation (yes–no); rationale for non-implementation; and tailoring of adaptation for a specific population (e.g., Veterans).

Results: Rapid matrix analysis of individual qualitative interviews resulted in 510 qualitative codes. Veterans and clinicians reported that the intervention was a generally good ft for VA Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Centers and for Veterans. Following group meetings to reach adaptation consensus, 158 adaptations were completed. Most commonly, adaptations added or extended a component; were small in size and scope; intended to improve the effectiveness of the intervention, and based on experience as a patient or working with patients. Few adaptations were targeted towards a specific group, including Veterans. Veteran and clinician stakeholders reported that these adaptations were important and would benefit Veterans, and that they felt heard and understood during the adaptation process.

Conclusions: A stakeholder-engaged, iterative, and mixed methods approach was successful for adapting Collaborative Decision Skills Training for immediate clinical application to Veterans in a psychosocial rehabilitation center. The ongoing interactions among multiple stakeholders resulted in high quality, tailored adaptations which are likely to be generalizable to other populations or settings. We recommend the use of this stakeholder-engaged, iterative approach to guide adaptations.

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