Diabetes Knowledge Translation Status in Developing Countries: A Mixed Method Study Among Diabetes Researchers in Case of Iran

Ali Valinejadi, Farahnaz Sadoughi, Masoud Salehi


Background: Despite considerable investment in research, the existing research evidence is frequently not implemented and/or leads to useless or detrimental care in healthcare. The knowledge‑practice gap proposed as one of the main causes of not achieving the treatment goals in diabetes. Iran also is facing a difference between the production and utilization of the knowledge of diabetes. The aim of this study was to assess the status of diabetes knowledge translation (KT) in Iran.

Methods: This was a survey that executed in 2015 by concurrent mixed methods approach in a descriptive, cross‑sectional method. The research population was 65 diabetes researchers from 14 diabetes research centers throughout Iran. The research was carried out via the self‑assessment tool for research institutes (SATORI), a valid and reliable tool. Focus group discussions were used to complete this tool. The data were analyzed using quantitative (descriptive method by Excel software) and qualitative approaches (thematic analysis) based on SATORI‑extracted seven themes.

Results: The mean of scores “the question of research,” “knowledge production,” “knowledge transfer,” “promoting the use of evidence,” and all aspects altogether were 2.48, 2.80, 2.18, 2.06, and 2.39, respectively. The themes “research quality and timeliness” and “promoting and evaluating the use of evidence” received the lowest (1.91) and highest mean scores (2.94), respectively. Except for the theme “interaction with research users” with a relatively mediocre scores (2.63), the other areas had scores below the mean.

Conclusions: The overall status of diabetes KT in Iran was lower than the ideal situation. There are many challenges that require great interventions at the organizational or macro level. To reinforce diabetes KT in Iran, it should hold a more leading and centralized function in the strategies of the country’s diabetes research system.

Keywords: Diabetes mellitus, knowledge translation, research centers

Full Text: