The move towards integrated care: Lessons learnt from managing patients with multiple morbidities in the UK

Ian Litchfield, Beth Kingston, Dee Narga, Alice Turner

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Abstract

INTRODUCTION: The multi-disciplinary care offered to patients with multi-morbidities offers a powerful example of the practical challenges faced by the National Health Service's planned move to more closely integrated models of care.

PURPOSE, OBJECTIVE, AND CONTRIBUTIONS: The intention of this work was to identify the opportunities and obstacles presented by the current provision of integrated care and explore their implications for existing and future policy initiatives.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted a qualitative exploration of the experiences of senior managers, commissioners and clinicians, using a post-hoc content analysis to populate and present the results within the multi-componential Sustainable integrated chronic care model for multi-morbidity: delivery, financing, and performance (SELFIE) framework designed to understand integrated care.

RESULTS: A total of 13 senior medical directors, commissioners, and managers, and 15 clinicians from a range of care settings were interviewed. Relative factors within the six framework components were identified namely; issues around communication between settings (Service delivery), the importance of collaborative leadership (Leadership & governance); the need for high-level collaboration (Workforce), better directed financial incentives (Financing), the lack of software interoperability (Technologies and medical products) and constraints on sharing and utilising patient data (Information & Research).

CONCLUSIONS: The SELFIE framework has provided valuable insight into the challenges presented by inter-organisational and inter-professional working that will help guide the design and implementation of policies promoting integrated care. These may be mitigated by sharing the varied experiences and priorities that exist across primary and care settings, alongside improving communication and supporting collaborative leadership. There also appears a clear role for refocussing financial incentives to reward shared responsibility at all levels of service delivery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)777-785
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Policy
Volume126
Issue number8
Early online date25 May 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2022 The Author(s)

Keywords

  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated
  • Humans
  • Leadership
  • Morbidity
  • State Medicine
  • United Kingdom

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