Researchers from Cambridge in the UK carried out a two-part study looking at time lags and its impacts. In the study, translation was considered as the process of conversion of basic science to patient benefit:
- Part one –literature was identified that described conceptual models of translation. This was done online, using resources such as Google Scholar, PubMed and Web of Science. Keywords such as “commercialisation” and “translational research” were used to find this data.
- Part two – The literature relating to the lag time in health research was reviewed. Additional search terms such as “time factors” and “delays” were used. The lag data was then analysed.
The study concluded that on average, it takes about 17 years for a research to be implemented in clinical practice in the health industry. Delays are viewed as a threat to possible patient benefit and waste of limited resources. However, lags are needed at some points to guarantee the efficacy and safety of new advances or treatments.