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 and social care funding for individuals with complex, long-term needs. It aims to explore how to link system redesign and funding models with giving people more control 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 to design 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
  • 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, was commissioned by the Department of Health to undertake an early evaluation of the IPC programme, and to provide advice and recommendations on feasible research questions and methods for a longer-term outcome evaluation of IPC.

Building on work undertaken by RAND Europe in summer 2015, which looked at the early stages of the IPC programme, our evaluation focuses on:

  • progress with implementation of key activities within the IPC sites
  • the nature of the financial model, in particular how sites calculate the size of individual integrated budgets
  • the implementation challenges facing each site
  • a stock take of key outputs (to the extent data are available) such as the number of individual care plans and budgets, services purchased, overall service costs, etc.
  • potential impacts, e.g., on integrated services
  • what a longer-term evaluation could feasibly comprise.

The work is taking place in two phases:

  • December 2015 to January 2016, at the end of which an interim report containing advice on the design of a longer-term evaluation was provided to DH
  • February 2016 to September 2016, when a final report will be written describing the different approaches to IPC, progress made by the sites, issues encountered etc.

The evaluation methods include carrying out semi-structured interviews with the leads and other staff in each of the IPC sites, and the collection of administrative data that may be available relating to people who have been assessed for integrated personal budgets.

One objective of this early evaluation is to provide advice on feasible research questions and methods for a longer-term evaluation. An interim report on this topic was submitted to DH in February 2016.

The final report of the early evaluation of the IPC programme should be available by the end of 2016.