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The Health Foundation, an independent charitable organisation, and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), have today announced funding for the 5-year delivery phase of IMPACT (Improving Adult Care Together), the UK centre for implementing evidence in adult social care.  

In 2019, the Health Foundation and ESRC, as part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), announced £15m, partly supported by the Strategic Priorities Fund, to develop a unique evidence implementation centre focused on adult social care. The centre was set up to transform how social care evidence is turned into practice, including supporting adults and young people moving into adult social care and how social care interacts with partner agencies and other sectors. 

Since then, IMPACT has been working on six initial projects, across the UK, to pilot ways to implement high-quality evidence in areas of adult social care such as direct payments, support for carers of people with dementia, asset-based approaches, and technology-enabling care. 

After a successful first 18 months co-designing and establishing the centre, IMPACT, led by Professor Jon Glasby at the University of Birmingham, is moving to recruit additional sites and expand its delivery of projects to support use of evidence in adult social care. Building on the relationships it has developed the centre’s work seeks to improve the uptake of evidence-based interventions in commissioning and frontline practice and build capacity among staff working in adult social care to evaluate innovations and improvements. 

Professor Jon Glasby said: ‘We’re incredibly excited to be moving into our next phase, delivering a series of new projects across the UK via our four delivery models. At the end of last year, we ran an expression of interest for people to host sites in 2023–24, and have just started the recruitment for 12 posts across our Demonstrator and Facilitator delivery models. Soon we’ll also be sharing how you can get involved in Ask IMPACT - a service which produces accessible evidence-informed guides on the key issues facing social care.    

‘And as our pilot projects wrap up this summer, we’ll be sharing learnings and outcomes, as well as working to embed these in national policy and practice, to achieve our vision: “good support isn’t just about ‘services’ – it’s about having a life.”’ 

Malte Gerhold, Director of Innovation and Improvement said: ‘With increasing pressure on social care, the need to enable improvements, both in service users’ experience and the care models we're using, has never been greater. Compared to the NHS, there is relatively little systematic support, particularly for providers of social care. We are therefore proud to be funding the IMPACT Centre. An important part of the Health Foundation's new strategy is a focus on care at home and in the community, and IMPACT is one crucial way to deliver this. 

‘We have been very impressed with their work so far, including the centre’s involvement of key players across the sector and service users, and are looking forward to seeing their ambitious programme get underway.’ 

Professor Alison Park, Interim Executive Chair of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) said: ‘Adult social care touches the lives of millions of people across the UK. The IMPACT Centre supports the increased use of evidence within social care, which is critical to improving front-line services. In this next phase, IMPACT will continue to work across the UK health and social care system, including with local stakeholders, to identify and address key areas of need and embed its co-produced findings in national policy and practice.’ 

Find out more about IMPACT on their website and Twitter.

Notes to editors 

IMPACT is recruiting for 12 new roles, including four IMPACT Facilitators and eight Senior Strategic Improvement Coaches (Demonstrators). Find out more on the IMPACT website

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