Current projects
Integrated Personal Commissioning programme scoping study and early evaluation
Integrated Personal Commissioning programme scoping study and early evaluation

The Integrated Personal Commissioning (IPC) programme links health, social care and education (where relevant) funding for individuals with complex, long-term needs. It aims to explore how to integrate system redesign and funding models by giving people more control over their lives through person-centred care, support planning and integrated personal budgets.

The objectives of the programme are to:

  • improve the quality of life of people with complex needs and their carers
  • enable people with complex needs to have greater involvement in their own care so that they can design their own support around their needs and circumstances
  • prevent crises in people‚Äôs lives that lead to unplanned hospital care by keeping them well and supporting self-management of their long-term conditions
  • improve integration and quality of care, including better user and carer experience of care.

The programme is mainly targeted towards: children and young people with complex needs; people with multiple long-term conditions (e.g. older frail people); people with learning disabilities with high support needs; and people with significant mental health needs. The programme began in April 2015 and is being implemented in nine sites in England.

PIRU, along with colleagues from the Economics of Social and Healthcare Research Unit (ESHCRU) at the University of Kent, were commissioned by the Department of Health to undertake some early stage research on the implementation of the IPC programme as the basis for providing advice and recommendations on feasible research questions and methods for a longer-term outcome evaluation.

Building on work undertaken by RAND Europe in summer 2015, which looked at the early stages of the IPC programme, the PIRU/ESHCRU work focused on:

  • progress with implementation of key activities within the IPC sites
  • the implementation challenges facing each site
  • potential impacts, e.g., on integrated services
  • what a longer-term evaluation could feasibly comprise.

The project comprised semi-structured interviews with the leads and other staff in each of the IPC sites, and interviews with staff in NHS England, together with a review of the design, methods and practical challenges of previous evaluations of personal budget pilot programmes.

The objective of the early stage work with the IPC pilots was to be able to provide advice on feasible research questions and methods for a longer-term evaluation. An interim report on this topic was submitted to the Department of Health in February 2016.

This was followed by a final report in May 2016 setting out the two Units' advice to the Department of Health and NHS England on the longer-term integrated personal commissioning (IPC) programme independent outcome evaluation, which is available here>>