By now, you have engaged partners, conducted an environmental scan and assessed the existing evidence to support your position. You reviewed the feasibility of your strategy, promoted it to your stakeholders and implemented it. Welcome to the final step!
Evaluate the processes employed during the implementation of your PSE change intervention as well as the short-term, intermediate and long-term outcomes expected to result from the intervention. Evaluation can provide quantitative and qualitative data to demonstrate the change(s) that occurred.
You developed specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound (SMART) objectives for your PSE intervention, using indicators to help you measure the processes and changes that occurred as you implemented these objectives.
Input indicators measure resources used to carry out the PSE change intervention and output indicators measure immediate results, which help evaluate program efficiency.
Process indicators measure the key processes and activities that are expected to contribute to the intervention outcomes, such as reach and quality.
Short-term outcomes are changes you want to enact that promote healthier behaviors. Such changes may occur in the following areas: “physical (e.g., proximity to healthier food and spaces for physical activity); economic (e.g., changes to prices, taxes); social (e.g., changes to social networks); and communication (e.g., advertisements, point-of-decision prompts).” (Leeman, 2012). For example, if your initiative focused on the elimination of food deserts, a short-term outcome could be securing a dedicated, highly trafficked space for a weekly farmers market.
Intermediate outcomes align with your behavioral objectives, which are desired changes in your audience’s behaviors, such as actions you want them to engage in or actions you want them to stop as a result of your PSE change intervention. For example, evaluation of an intermediate outcome would be assessing the change in community members’ physical activity following the installation of walking paths and bike lanes, or the change in attitudes toward or consumption of sugary drinks following passage of a city soda tax.
Long-term outcomes/impact align with your health objectives and should correspond with your comprehensive cancer control plan goals. These outcomes are the desired changes in your audience’s health status that occur as a result of your intervention. They should be “effective, equitable and cost-effective at the population level.” (Leeman, 2012). One such example would be a change in cervical cancer incidence following improvements in access to HPV vaccination and cervical cancer screening for vulnerable populations.
You may have identified some barriers during implementation that held back some of your success. Be sure to document your lessons learned and share your PSE change successes with stakeholders!