Policy units to help set health agenda for ageing population and health commissioning
The University of Manchester has been awarded funding for two Policy Research Units to explore how the health needs of the ageing population are to be met and to investigate how health and care systems and commissioning will look in the future.
The £10m funding from the National Institute for Health Research is designed to ensure that the government and arms-length bodies have the best possible information and evidence available when making policy decisions about health and social care.
One of the Units, led by Manchester with Newcastle University and the London School of Economics will focus on Older People and Frailty. The researchers will work closely and flexibly with policy makers on and the needs of this population and the people who provide care for them. This includes patients, carers and the public who will be part of the team throughout.
The work will be arranged in themes, such as the impact of population change on health and social care; links between frailty, disability and multiple conditions; long-term and end-of-life care; use of technologies; personalised care; self-care and healthy ageing.
There are also some issues that are so important or influential, they will be considered in every aspect of the research. These include social inequalities, experiences of family and other carers, current financial constraints, Brexit and how best to commission services for the future.
Professor Chris Todd, Director of the Older People and Frailty PRU at The University of Manchester, said: “The funding of this research unit offers a huge opportunity to improve the health and wellbeing of older people and those with frailty.
“We have brought together world-leading researchers who will dedicate themselves to advancing policy-related research so as to make a real difference by working with the Department of Health and Social Care to promote healthy ageing.”
Seventy years after its establishment the NHS is in a time of transition, with welcome additional funding providing opportunities to integrate services across the health and social care landscape
The other Policy Research Unit has been renewed and has been working on the issue of Health and Care Systems and Commissioning since 2011. It will receive a further £5 million over the next five years and will also include the University of Kent and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Its research focuses upon the structures and organisation that underpin how the health and care systems work. This includes evidence summaries explaining what we know about how services should be planned and paid for, research exploring how GP services are working and the pressures that GPs experience and research into how different payment mechanisms affect how organisations behave.
Deputy Director of the Health and Care Systems and Commissioning PRU, Professor Kath Checkland said: “Seventy years after its establishment the NHS is in a time of transition, with welcome additional funding providing opportunities to integrate services across the health and social care landscape.
“Our research will be at the cutting-edge of these developments, ensuring a strong evidence base to underpin the development of new approaches to service delivery.
“The University of Manchester has a growing reputation for policy-related research, and this new investment by the Department of Health and Social Care provides an excellent opportunity to extend and develop our research and engagement with the policy process.”