Implementation, interrupted: Identifying and leveraging factors that sustain after a programme interruption

Rachel Hennein, Joseph Ggita, Bashir Ssuna, Donna Shelley, Ann R. Akiteng, J. Lucian Davis, Achilles Katamba, Mari Armstrong-Hough

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Many implementation efforts experience interruptions, especially in settings with developing health systems. Approaches for evaluating interruptions are needed to inform re-implementation strategies. We sought to devise an approach for evaluating interruptions by exploring the sustainability of a programme that implemented diabetes mellitus (DM) screening within tuberculosis clinics in Uganda in 2017. In 2019, we conducted nine interviews with clinic staff and observed clinic visits to determine their views and practices on providing integrated care. We mapped themes to a social ecological model with three levels derived from the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR): outer setting (i.e. community), inner setting (i.e. clinic), and individuals (i.e. clinicians). Respondents explained that DM screening ceased due to disruptions in the national supply chain for glucose test strips, which had cascading effects on clinics and clinicians. Lack of screening supplies in clinics limited clinicians’ opportunities to perform DM screening, which contributed to diminished self-efficacy. However, culture, compatibility and clinicians’ beliefs about DM screening sustained throughout the interruption. We propose an approach for evaluating interruptions using the CFIR and social ecological model; other programmes can adapt this approach to identify cascading effects of interruptions and target them for re-implementation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1868-1882
Number of pages15
JournalGlobal Public Health
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2022


  • diabetes mellitus
  • implementation
  • interruption
  • non-communicable diseases
  • qualitative methods
  • tuberculosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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