The Department of Health and Social Care has commissioned three industry organisations to develop an ‘innovation network’ to enable local authorities to test new ideas and share sector knowledge.
Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), Think Local Act Personal (TLAP), and Shared Lives Plus have been given government funding to bring together innovative providers, commissioners and interested members of the public to identify ways to support each other and develop successful community-based innovations on a larger scale.
The network, which is already made up of members from NHS Alliance, Public Health England and ADASS, plans to build a digital platform that will draw together learning from the group to develop tools, ideas and good practice examples.
It will also deliver face-to-face ‘action learning events’ to look at specific social care challenges and identify practical solutions.
SCIE said there are some good examples of innovative models of health, social care and support for adults across the country, but the challenge is to scale up these primarily small-scale, community-focussed success so that as many people benefit from them as possible.
This was studied in detail in a report by SCIE, innovation programme Nesta and TLAP last year. The ‘Growing innovative models of health, care and support for adults’ went on to recommend that the government fund the network “to enable innovative local authorities and local partners to test new ideas and share learning and support with others”.