Using implementation science to inform reform approaches in family violence in Victoria

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A Royal Commission into family violence was established in Victoria in 2015, and the Commission made 227 recommendations for reducing the impact of family violence and improving the safety of women and children. The Victorian government subsequently committed to implement all recommendations with a significant reform program. Ultimately the reforms aim to significantly improve outcomes for people facing significant adversity.

CEI supported the efforts of those tasked with independently monitoring the progress of these reforms. Our team worked with the Office of the Family Violence Reform Implementation Monitor to apply implementation science to their core business. The Monitor is a statutory office that reports annually to the Victorian Parliament and the public, providing an independent perspective on the progress of implementing the family violence reforms.

CEI supported the work of the Monitor; reviewing and reporting on the implementation of key reform initiatives. To enhance the impact and rigour of their review, CEI worked with the Monitor's office to apply implementation science concepts, methods and tools to their rapid reviews of these programs in a way that is fit for purpose for complex reforms. CEI equipped the Monitor's office to map the implementation process, assess implementation stages, and identified and described the key implementation barriers and enablers using a common evidence-informed framework: the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research. CEI helped build the capacity of the Monitor's office, as well as program implementers across the Victorian government, in order that they could continue to use these approaches into the future.

CEI's work with the Monitor's office enabled them to try, test and refine robust implementation science methods, meaning their rapid review findings were more readily interpreted against a backdrop of international evidence. The approach enhanced the structure and transparency of the implementation reviews, and enabled the Monitor to deliver rigorous, actionable insights to Parliament and the government agencies implementing the family violence reforms.