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Dissemination and Implementation Science Center (DISC)

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About Us

Dissemination and implementation research intends to bridge the gap between research, practice, and policy by building a knowledge base about how health information, effective interventions, and new clinical practices, guidelines and policies are communicated and integrated for public health and health care service use in specific settings. (NIH PAR-19-274).  Recognizing the need for increased capacity in D&I research, training and leadership, we established the UC San Diego DISC in 2020 as a center focusing on dissemination and implementation science across UC San Diego Health Sciences. Key activities provided by the UC San Diego ACTRI DISC include training, consultation, technical assistance, and mentoring to advance D&I science with a local, national, and global impact.

Mission

Establish UC San Diego as a nationally and internationally recognized flagship for dissemination and implementation (D&I) science through training, technical assistance, community engagement, and research advancement.

Vision

Advance UC San Diego's public health impact locally and globally through D&I science.


For additional information please contact us at DISC@health.ucsd.edu

Executive Leadership Team & Organizational Chart

Gregory Aarons

Gregory Aarons
Co-Director
Professor, Psychiatry
Health Sciences
Email
Twitter

 

Borsika Rabin

Borsika Rabin
Co-Director
Associate Professor
Public Health
Health Sciences
Email
Twitter

Lauren Brookman-Frazee

Lauren Brookman-Frazee
Director of Education and Training
Professor, Psychiatry
Health Sciences
Email
Twitter

Nicole Stadnick

Nicole Stadnick
Director of Dissemination and Evaluation
Assistant Professor, Psychiatry
Health Sciences
Email
Twitter
Study Lab


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DISC Community

Click here to meet the DISC Team and Community

San Diego LEND

San Diego Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (San Diego LEND)

The program is now closed to applicants. Thank you!

The San Diego Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Other Related Disabilities program (San Diego LEND) is a unique, interdisciplinary leadership training program funded by a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The San Diego LEND is administered through the UC San Diego Altman Clinical Translational Research Institute DISC in collaboration with San Diego State University, Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, and government and community agencies within San Diego and Imperial Counties. San Diego LEND is part of a national network of 60 LEND training programs.

The San Diego LEND program provides interdisciplinary and leadership training to graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, medical residents and fellows, practicing professionals, family members, and self-advocates focused on applying implementation science to promote equity in access to evidence-based services for individuals with autism spectrum disorder or other developmental disorders (ASD/DD). Training activities are scheduled from August through May and there are multiple training intensity options ranging from 40 to 300 hours over the training period.

What makes San Diego LEND unique? 

  • San Diego LEND faculty have expertise applying implementation science, the scientific study of methods and strategies to promote the use of evidence-based practice and research by practitioners and policymakers, across community service systems caring for individuals with ASD/DD. 
  • We offer specialized training in implementation leadership, which is strategic leadership focused on supporting the use and sustainment of evidence-based practices. 
  • We leverage strong community partnerships and multi-institutional collaboration offering opportunities to use the strengths and expertise of both academic institutions and community partners to target service disparities and promote equity in access to evidence-based ASD/DD services.
  • We strive to provide interdisciplinary training that is responsive to the unique characteristics of our border community of San Diego and Imperial Counties with the goal of improving service and clinical outcomes for our residents.

Who can become a LEND trainee? 

      • Graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, medical residents, and fellows looking to enhance their training and build expertise in working with ASD/DD populations.
      • Professionals dedicated to caring for children with ASD/DD who are looking to enhance their clinical expertise and leadership skills.
      • Family members of neurodiverse individuals interested in providing the family perspective to fellow trainees and receive training and mentorship in advocacy and leadership
      • Autistic/Neurodiverse individuals interested in sharing their lived experiences and receive training and mentorship to develop their self-advocacy and leadership skills 

Why become a LEND trainee?

Benefits to being a San Diego LEND trainee include:

  • Receive training from LEND faculty from UC San Diego, San Diego State University, Rady Children’s Hospital, and the community with expertise in implementation science and community partnerships across service systems 
  • Opportunity to participate in innovative training and ongoing seminars focused on Implementation Leadership to promote equitable access to evidence-based care for individuals with ASD/DD
  • Targeted training in culturally responsive care for under resourced communities
  • Opportunity to provide technical assistance/consultation and produce policy briefs to improve the system of care for individuals with ASD/DD 
  • One-to-one faculty mentoring with core faculty members including mentored completion of the Individualized Development Training Plan and a Community Action Project 
  • Unique chance to learn with faculty and colleagues across disciplines
  • Individualized program scheduling to accommodate working professionals and community members
  • Stipend payment (for some trainees)

Become a DISC Member

The UC San Diego ACTRI DISC offers two membership categories: DISC General Member and DISC Investigator. 

Complete this 5-minute questionnaire and join DISC today!

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Education & Training

DISC Monthly Seminar

Monthly learning community to discuss the latest in D&I literature, workshop new proposals and learn from D&I experts.

DISC Seminar is held monthly on the 2nd Thursday of the month from 2-3:30pm.  Topic and location information sent in monthly emails.  Select recordings are available on the DISC Youtube channel.

Access seminar archives prior to 2019

Seminar Archives

Journal Club Date

Presenter/Discussant

Presentation

Readings & Resources

October 2019

Lindsey Yourman

Mojdeh Motamedi

Quality Improvement and Improvement Science for Geriatrics Research & Practice

"Creating a Learning Health System through Rapid-Cycle, Randomized Testing"

November 2019

James Pittman

VA Merit Resubmission

December 2019

Sapna Mendon

Part I of a mini-series focused on Innovative Methods in D&I Research

"Novel approaches to implementation research: The utility and application of comparative configurational methods"

January 2020

Paul Estabrooks

Monica Perez Jolles

Co-Production of Evidence to Promote Healthy Weights

Part II of a mini-series focused on Innovative Methods in D&I Research
"Core Functions and Forms of Complex Health Interventions"

February 2020

Haomiao Jin

Part III of a mini-series focused on Innovative Methods in D&I Research

"Stepped Wedge Design"

March 2020

Radley "Chris" Sheldrick

Part III of a mini-series focused on Innovative Methods in D&I Research

"Systems Thinking in Implementation Research"

April 2020

Rebecca Lengnick-Hall

"Service contracting as a bridging factor in implementation
and sustainment of evidence-based practices"

Reading

May 2020

Ana Baumann and
Leopoldo Cabassa

"Reframing Implementation Science to Address Inequities in Healthcare
Delivery"

Reading

June 2020

Margaret Crane

"Under the Hood of Organizations Driving the Dissemination of
Evidence-based Practices" 

July 2020

Laurie Lindamer

"Improving EBP Training to Increase Access to Care for Veterans with TBI"

August 2020

Russell E. Glasgow

"RE-AIM Evolution, Iterative Use, and Health Equity: Applications and Ideas for Feedback"

Reading #1

Reading #2

Reading #3

September 2020

Erika Crable

"Using the EPIS Framework for Criminal Justice System Change"

October 2020

Jordan Farrar

"Applying the Exploration, Preparation, Implementation, Sustainment (EPIS) Framework to Testing Strategies for Scaling Evidence-Based Mental Health Interventions in Fragile and Low-Resource Settings: An Example from Sierra Leone"

Reading

November 2020

"Racial Equity and Role of D&I Science: Ongoing Series"

December 2020

The Global Action Research Center (Global ARC)

"Authentic Community Engagement: Tools and Challenges"

Reading #1

Reading #2

Reading #3

January 2021

Shoba Ramanadhan

"Engaged Approaches to Capacity-building For Community-based Implementers"

Email disc@health.ucsd.edu to request presentation materials.

February 2021

Bonnie Kaiser

"Ad-Hoc Adaptations Made During Delivery of a Family Therapy Intervention in Eldoret, Kenya"

March 2021

Blaine Garman-McClaine

"DISC Member and PhD Candidate in Special Education at Indiana University, will present on his F31 proposal."

April 2021

Borsika Rabin and Nicole Stadnick

"Novel Community Engagement Methods: Insights from COVID-19 Implementation Research."

May 2021

Emily Treichler

"Order Whatever You Want, as Long as It's from the Menu? Preliminary Results and Reflections on Adapting and Implementing Collaborative Decision Skills Training for Veterans with Psychosis"

June 2021

Eric Heckler

"Precision Health: Integrating Systems Science, Optimization Methods, and Implementation Science for Advancing a Community-Centered Learning Population Health Approach"

July 2021

James Pittman

"Solution-focused research can achieve its goals more rapidly by progressing through the 3 stages of create, trial, and sustain"

August 2021

Miya Barnett & Chris Miller

"The FRAME-IS: a framework for documenting modifications to implementation strategies in healthcare"

Reading

September 2021

Ross Brownson & Elva Arredondo

"Expanding Implementation Research to Prevent Chronic Diseases in Community Settings" and "Implementation science should give higher priority to health equity"

October 2021

Lindsey Wade & David Mier

"San Diego Community Health Needs Assessment – Opportunities for Engagement & Collaboration"

Slides

November 2021

Kimberly Hook

"Global Mental Health and Implementation Science: Perspectives and Opportunities in Ukraine"

December 2021

Bethany Kwan

"Methods of Stakeholders Engagement"

Website DICE Methods

February 2022

Paul Luelmo

"Rapid Cycle Improvement Science Methods to Improve Teacher Training"

March 2022

Thomas Patton

"Cost Effectiveness Analysis in D&I Science"

Reading

September 2022 Thomas Engell "Hunting for effective pragmatism and implementability in child welfare and youth mental health" Slides

 

DISC Consultation & Consultation Team

Due to limited staff capacity, the DISC Consultation services are currently only available to those from ACTRI-affiliated institutions listed here

To request DISC Consultations, please complete the Consultation Request Form. The form will ask questions about you and your D&I project. It will take approximately 5 minutes to complete. The information that you share will be reviewed by the DISC Consultation team on a rolling basis. Please note that the DISC Consultation Team requires 7-10 business days to review and respond to consultation requests. Please review the Triage for Grant-related and Manuscript requests below for more detailed information about timeline and allowable requests. Consultations are not a guarantee for the consultant being able to serve as a Co-Investigator on the grant proposal. As part of our consultation services we provide resources, initial guidance for models, measures, and designs and we can make recommendations to connect you with others who could serve as Co-Investigators on your proposal, if needed.

Who can request a DISC Consultation?

Due to limited staff capacity, the DISC Consultation services are currently only available to those from UC San Diego ACTRI-affiliated institutions listed here. You must also be a current DISC Member to request DISC Consultation. To become a member, please join here.

Become a Member

 

Current D&I Science Center Consultation Team

 Gregory Aarons

Dr. Gregory Aarons is a clinical and organizational psychologist, Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UC San Diego (UCSD), a faculty member in the UCSD/SDSU Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, Co-Director of the UCSD Dissemination and Implementation Science Center (DISC), and Director of the Child and Adolescent Services Research Center (CASRC).

 Erika Crable

Dr. Crable is a Postdoctoral Scholar and health services researcher. Her research focuses on improving the use of evidence in policymaking, and testing implementation strategies to promote access to evidence-based substance use treatment, mental health services, HIV prevention and treatment services for safety-net and justice-involved populations. She is also a fellow in the NIMH/NIDA-funded Implementation Research Institute and in the NIDA-funded Lifespan/Brown University Criminal Justice Research Training Program.

 Lauren Brookman-Frazee

Dr. Brookman-Frazee is a Professor in the UC San Diego Department of Psychiatry, Director of Education and Training for the DISC, Associate Director of the Child and Adolescent Services Research Center, and Co-Director of the SDSU/UC San Diego Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology. Her research involves partnering with community leaders, therapists, and families to develop, test, and implement scalable psychosocial interventions in children’s mental health and developmental services.

 Bonnie Kaiser

Dr. Bonnie Kaiser is an Associate Professor jointly appointed in the Department of Anthropology and Global Health Program. Her research focuses on elucidating cultural models of mental health and illness and exploring their connections to care-seeking; developing and adapting measurement tools for cross-cultural research and interventions; improving cultural adaptation of global mental health interventions; and critically exploring concepts of trauma, risk, and resilience.

 Margaret Crane

Margaret Crane is clinical psychology PhD candidate at Temple University. Her research, which is funded by an F31 and a department grant, examines strategies to disseminate evidence-based practices for youth mental health. Margaret also is a therapist at the Temple University Child and Adolescent Anxiety Disorders Clinic, and a clinical extern at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

 Jessica Montoya

Dr. Jessica Montoya’s research has focused on the development, implementation, and evaluation of mobile health interventions to promote health behaviors (e.g., medication adherence and physical activity). She is also interested in understanding the neurologic impact of comorbidities, including cardiovascular disease and addictions, among individuals aging with HIV.

James Pittman 

Dr. James Pittman earned his Master of Social Work degree from Portland State University, and his PhD in Social Work from Smith College School. He serves as the Associate Director for CESAMH's Education and Dissemination Unit and the Director for CESAMH's eScreening Core. He is the Lead Mental Health Social Worker and Section Chief for La Jolla Outpatient Mental Health Programs for the VA San Diego Healthcare System. Dr. Pittman is also an HS Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the UC San Diego School of Medicine.

 Borsika Rabin

Dr. Borsika Rabin is an Associate Professor at the UC San Diego Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science, the Co-Director of the UC San Diego Dissemination and Implementation Science Center (DISC), and an Implementation Science (IS) expert on a number of large NIH and VA Center grants and research projects including the VA San Diego Center of Excellence for Stress and Mental Health and the Quadruple Aim QUERI Program (Denver VA).

 Nicole Stadnick

Dr. Nicole Stadnick is an Assistant Professor and licensed psychologist at the University of California, San Diego. Her research aims to examine the effectiveness and implementation of evidence-based practices for children with mental health and developmental concerns served in community-based settings.

 Clare Viglione

Ms. Clare Viglione is the DISC Manager and an Assistant Consultant. She graduated from Columbia University in 2015 with an MPH. Clare has held research management positions at NYU Langone Health and Boston University in addition to health education roles with Harlem Children’s Zone and the New York City Department of Health. Clare has growing interest and experience in dissemination and implementation science and brings a unique skillset to the DISC offering clinical, research, and team management expertise.

Mentoring Program

DISC will soon be offering mentor and mentee opportunities for D&I students, trainees and investigators.  More details to come.

D&I Academic Coursework

DISC offers a graduate course annually in the Spring on D&I science co-taught by three members of the Executive Leadership Team, Dissemination and Implementation Science in Health: An Introduction (FPM 291).  This course focuses on disseminating and scaling up health interventions in real-world settings.  Interactive didactic sessions and guest lectures on implementation of research principles, approaches and methods.  Will design a proposal to implement or scale-up a clinical or public health intervention.

Dr. Borsika Rabin and Dr. Lauren Brookman-Frazee are currently teaching undergraduate Dissemination and Implementation, Policy and Health Services in Mental Health (FMPH 428).  This course will use Dissemination and Implementation Science to address the gap between promising research results for mental health and their successful translation into improved individual, community and population health.  

DISC Internship Program

DISC currently offers undergraduate internships for course credit through the UC San Diego Family Medicine and Public Health Department (Course Number: FMPH199 and FMPH 198).  Email DISC for application instructions.

Read the full internship description.

Current D&I Science Center Interns

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Olivia Fang

Olivia Fang is currently a part of UCSD Extension's Post Baccalaureate Pre-Health Program. She is an alumni of UC Berkeley where she majored in Psychology and minored in Creative Writing. She is interested in psychiatry and wants to learn about the interdisciplinary nature of D&I research and how such research can guide and improve the implementation of interventions in healthcare.

 

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Laura Sheckter

Laura Sheckter is a first-year MPH student concentrating in Health Behavior and Health Policy. She hopes to learn how to help populations improve their overall well-being during her time at UCSD. More specifically, Laura is interested in learning about the process of writing D&I research and gaining the tools to apply that research through experiential learning.

Tools & Resources

DISC Resources

  • DISC/UCLA 3Rs Documenting Adaptations Workshop Recording - May 2022

National & International Resources

DISC Calendar of Events

ACTRI on Twitter