Practice Facilitation/Coaching

Also called “practice coaches,” practice facilitators collaborate with care teams as they design and implement new processes and interventions to improve patient care.

Practice Facilitation/Coaching

Our practice facilitators partner with care teams to implement changes and improve care

Changing clinical practice is hard — and busy care teams need support to achieve lasting improvements. That’s where practice facilitators come in. Also called “practice coaches,” practice facilitators collaborate with care teams as they design and implement new processes and interventions to improve patient care. 

Practice facilitators support local implementation teams by:

  • Organizing and managing the implementation effort
  • Bringing in relevant data to make sure changes are leading to the desired outcome 
  • Problem-solving and addressing barriers to change
  • Adapting the intervention for the local context
  • Sharing current evidence and guidelines
  • Developing workflows, job aids, tools, and resources to support care teams
  • Aligning electronic medical record tools to workflows
  • Serving as a conduit to researchers, care delivery operations leaders, and data teams

Practice coaching can help health care systems both improve clinical quality and also develop their internal capacity for quality improvement. Coaches also collect best practices that health systems can use to spread and sustain successful changes. 

We are growing our practice facilitation capacity

Our practice facilitation work spans a decade and has helped support primary care practices nationwide. We have trained facilitators ourselves, developed curricula for others to perform training, and supported health systems, primary care associations and others in adding coaches to their workforce. As we continue to lead in the field of implementation science, we expect practice facilitation to play an increasingly important role in our work to spread evidence-based best practices in health care.

Featured practice facilitation work

Healthy Hearts Northwest


Boosting quality improvement capacity in primary care with the help of practice coaches

KP Washington projects

Integrated Pain Management
Adolescent Integrated Mental Health
Social Health Integration


Featured publications

Parchman ML, Anderson ML, Dorr DA, Fagnan LJ, O’Meara ES, Tuzzio L, Penfold RB, Cook AJ, Hummel J, Conway C, Cholan R, Baldwin LM. A randomized trial of external practice support to improve cardiovascular risk factors in primary care.  Ann Fam Med. 2019 Aug 12;17(Suppl 1):S40-S49. doi: 10.1370/afm.2407. PubMed

Featured resource

Curriculum for practice facilitators helping primary care practices become patient-centered medical homes

Featured news

Dr. L.J. Fagnan shares an effective way to support rural practices, illustrating why “place matters.”
Ariel Singer, Carolyn Brill, and Tara Kline
How our practice facilitators work with Kaiser Permanente Washington care teams to improve care