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Integrated Care Pioneers

In May 2013, the National Collaboration for Integrated Care and Support (the national partnership announced in Integrated care: our shared commitment) wrote to local areas, inviting them to express interest in becoming health and social care integration pioneers.

Successful pioneers were expected to work across health, social care and public health, as well as with local authorities and local voluntary organisations, sharing learning with the entire sector.

The purpose of the pioneers was to develop and test different approaches, enabling local integration and making an impact at scale. The pioneers were expected to produce better outcomes for people, improve patient and service user experience, and realise efficiency gains and savings.

On 1 November 2013, the government announced the selection of 14 local areas which would become integrated care pioneers. The 14 areas had developed innovative ways to transform the delivery of health and social care services and the government aimed to facilitate the spread of best practice across the country.

A second wave of integrated care pioneers was announced in January 2015, with another 11 local areas.

The pioneer programme was ultimately overshadowed by the introduction of the Better Care Fund and the Vanguard sites implementing the new models of care announced in the NHS Five Year Forward View.


Department of Health.
Letter inviting expressions of interest for health and social care integration 'pioneers'.
Department of Health; 2013.

National Collaboration for Integrated Care and Support.
Integrated Care and Support; Our Shared Commitment.
National Collaboration for Integrated Care and Support; 2013.

Department of Health and Social Care.
Integration pioneers leading the way for health and care reform.
Department of Health and Social Care; 2013.