Understanding implementation aspects of service delivery remains an important issue in clinical practice, but is poorly understood in the context of TSOs.This is problematic, since implementation issues are known to be critical for effective intervention outcomes.that they are (1) formally structured, (2) privately owned and independent from the government, (3) non-profit distributing, (4) self-governing, and (5) benefitting from voluntary activities [5, 10, 11].However, the use of terminology is variable and terms such as ‘non-profits’, ‘NGOs’, ‘community-based organisations’ (CBOs), ‘charities’, and ‘voluntary organisations’ are often used synonymously.Key databases were searched using relevant terms, experts in the field were contacted, and websites were reviewed.All identified studies were double-screened, and data were extracted independently by two authors.Yet, despite the political willingness to increase the role of the third sector in public service provisions, there is little research to demonstrate evidence on the capacity and capability of TSOs to successfully adhere to evidence-based practice (EBP) and to implement evidence-based interventions (EBIs) [4, 20, 21].
Thirty-one studies were included, most of which were conducted in North America.
The failure to understand aspects related to implementation introduces the risk of overlooking type iii errors (‘implementation failure’) [40, 41], i.e.
failure to implement an intervention as intended .
Overlooking this issue has great implications for policy and practice, as it may lead to false inferences about the effectiveness of interventions and programmes.
Thus, without understanding the implementation aspects of third sector service deliveries, it is difficult to assess their potential to substitute for public sector provision of social and health services.