Integrated Care Fellows Programme

The Integrated Care Fellows Development Programme is offered in partnership between NHS England, the Integrated Care Academy at the University of Suffolk and Blooming People.​

This 12-month long programme is an exciting and innovative opportunity to bring together partners from across the East of England region, and invite them to learn, work and develop solutions together.

The intention of this programme is to give practical as well as theoretical experience of working in a team on a problem and see; in action, the impact it can have through effective teamwork. 

​The main benefits of participation:​

  • Greater understanding of how the wider health, care and wellbeing system works.​
  • Greater insight into the opportunities and challenges facing health care systems. ​
  • Exposure to very experienced leaders in the system. ​
  • Time to focus and contribute to system priorities and in developing solutions.​
  • Working with a network of colleagues who also want real change.​
  • The opportunity to gain confidence in leadership roles. ​

Who is it for?

  • The programme is open to GPs (in first five years of qualifying), Nurses, AHPs, PAs, Pharmacists and other healthcare clinicians who work in General Practice alongside Social Care, Community Services, Mental Health, Hospitals, District Councils and the Community and Voluntary Sector.​
  • Backfill funding is provided to release fellows for 1 day per week for the year.​
  • Fellows complete the programme as a team of multidisciplinary primary and community care professionals, working together to deliver a project based on a real issue in their local system.

Programme Design 

Taught Programme

  • Education modules: a combination of taught components, guest speakers and practical problem solving.  Interactive, with a focus on real issues.​
  • Action Learning Sets: workshops to progress individual leadership skills throughout the programme.​
  • Skills workshops: covering ‘Fearless Speaking’ and ‘Presenting with Impact’, ‘Making Meetings Meaningful’, ‘Negotiating & Influencing’.​
  • Support from a member of the Primary Care School to help progress work on the delivery of a project plan.​
  • Celebration Day to share project outcomes and acknowledge and celebrate success.​

System Project

  • Development and delivery; or contribution to a project that is a system priority area. ​
  • Regional and system-based support groups, facilitated by the NHSE Fellow to help develop and deliver the project.​
  • Optional access to coaching from professionally qualified coaches. ​

Independent Evaluation

  • An evaluation of the 2021/22 programme was commissioned following a formal procurement exercise. (The final report was received after the commencement of the 2022/23 programme but we had some anecdotal feedback from fellows that we’ve incorporated into the current programme.) ​
  • Method: Desk research, qualitative research, comparator review and analysis. The key components covered:​
  1. Programme design and delivery.​
  2. Impact on fellows.​
  3. Wider impacts.​
  4. Comparison with similar programmes.​
  5. Looking forwards and recommendations. 

System Projects – the history so far….. 


  • High Level System Priorities: at the time CEO’s/Transformation Directors within the ICS’s provided a list of priorities. ​
  • Cohort Size:  sufficient in numbers and spread of professions to create 6 groups of MDT fellows – 1 group for each ICS area.​
  • System support: limited due to organisational changes/covid/recovery and general service pressures but predominantly the sponsors were too far removed from the fellows. ​


  • High Level System Priorities: PSC and ICA colleagues attended the ICB Transformation Directors meeting – unilaterally all suggested projects relating to suicide prevention.  ​
  • Cohort Size:  insufficient numbers and spread of professions to create 6 groups of MDT fellows – we agreed with ICB reps to create 2 groups: 1. BLMK/C&P/N&W and 2. Essex.​
  • System support: ​
  • Group 1 (BLMK/C&P/N&W) – good engagement with system leads – particular focus on suicide prevention awareness and training in the Peterborough area. ​
  • Group 2 (Essex) – changed their project to working in the area of Autism Spectrum Disorder – making connections to the Transforming Care Partnership.​

We have a waiting list of GP applicants for 2023/24 so we would be particularly interested to hear your thoughts on engaging with the non-medical groups in your areas.

Integrated Care Fellows

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