GHSP: Bridging the know-do gap in family planning: High Impact Practices

29 August, 2023

A new paper in Global Health: Science and Practice. We would be very interested to hear from HIFA members who have helped develop or apply HIPs in their work. Family planning and reproductive health are arguably at the forefront of healthcare information dissemination, as the sector is relatively well financed with several NGOs active, particularly in the US, and SRH is the only area of health where access to information is specifically recognised in the Sustainable Development Goals (it would be interesting to know the background to this, but it probably has to do with better-supported advocacy in the SRH sector).

CITATION: Assessing Use, Usefulness, and Application of the High Impact Practices in Family Planning Briefs and Strategic Planning Guides

Maria Carrasco, Saori Ohkubo, Annie Preaux, Christine Galavotti, Alexandria Mickler, Laura Raney, Abdulmumin Saad, Ados Velez May and Heidi Quinn

Global Health: Science and Practice August 2023, 11(4):e2200146;


The High Impact Practices (HIPs) briefs and strategic planning guides can help disseminate knowledge to a wide non-academic audience, support advocacy efforts, and strengthen family planning (FP) programs.

Interviews with FP professionals revealed a need to enhance local use of HIP briefs and strategic planning guides, adapt or develop additional formats and products for different audiences, and facilitate access to resources to support HIP implementation.

Key Implications

Creators of knowledge products intended for a non-academic audience, such as decision-makers and program implementers, should consider the importance of using simple, clear language and ensuring quality control of any translated material.

Requesting input from the main audience of knowledge products is critical to ensure such products address existing gaps and needs, thereby making efficient use of resources.



In global health, persistent barriers and challenges to bridging the gap between research and practice remain critical to address in most health areas. The High Impact Practices (HIPs) briefs and strategic planning guides aim to bridge the know-do gap in family planning (FP) by facilitating research utilization and knowledge sharing and also providing a summary of experiential knowledge from experts. The purpose of this qualitative study was to assess the use, usefulness, and application of these 2 knowledge products developed by the HIP Partnership for decision-makers and implementers in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).


This research used in-depth interviews with FP stakeholders from various LMICs to assess the use, usefulness, and application of 2 HIP products for FP decision-makers and implementers. The analysis was shaped by an adapted logic model framework to assess HIP product reach, engagement, usefulness, learning, and action.


We interviewed 35 FP professionals from January to March 2021. Participants reported that HIP products have a wide reach, have garnered positive engagement, and were useful. Participants generally liked the current format of the HIP products and reported using them to inform program design, guide discussions with partners, enhance personal knowledge, support advocacy work, and strengthen the guidance they provide to colleagues in the field. The participants shared important feedback to improve the development and dissemination of HIP products, particularly a need to enhance local access and use.


The study highlighted the importance of knowledge products, such as the HIP briefs and strategic planning guides, to make evidence and experiential knowledge accessible to a wide audience. These can be valuable tools for policymakers and program implementers to ensure public health practices are evidence-based and integrate experiential knowledge.

HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of HIFA (Healthcare Information For All), a global health community that brings all stakeholders together around the shared goal of universal access to reliable healthcare information. HIFA has 20,000 members in 180 countries, interacting in four languages and representing all parts of the global evidence ecosystem. HIFA is administered by Global Healthcare Information Network, a UK-based nonprofit in official relations with the World Health Organization. Email: