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Impact and

The Living Well UK programme has been independently evaluated by Cordis Bright. The evaluation assessed the extent to which the programme improved mental health and wellbeing outcomes for people, how it affected practitioners’ job satisfaction and motivations, and how far it enabled positive changes in local systems.


During the prototype phase May 2019 to March 2022, assessing evidence of impact of the new service models across the programme localities, as well as drawing out learning about the programme’s methodology for adaption and adoption of a service model and culture which centres on creating shared vision, forging strong commitments and building relationships. 


The evaluation results were published in November 2022, revealing some 3,438 people experienced improved mental health and a sense of increased ability to manage their own wellbeing. People saw practical improvements in their lives, such as returning to or gaining employment, claiming benefits, improving their housing situation, or in some cases, being able to stop taking antidepressants and feeling more able to leave the house. 


The report confirmed that Living Well fills a gap for people who bounce around the system, offering preventative, early intervention support, instead of joining long waiting lists for other services.


Staff also benefited from Living Well, through delivering improvements for the people they support, the recovery-oriented approach, and the development opportunities afforded through sharing skills and expertise across agencies. In particular, peer workers and third sector staff were pleased to be part of a professional network with the NHS and statutory sector staff.

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“Working with the staff has enabled me to build up my confidence in dealing with day to day issues, and coping when things get difficult. I also feel better equipped to make confident decisions and when I am well I enjoy every moment playing with my son.”

–  Hannah, Living Well Hub Service User, Lambeth

Big Outcomes


Early on in the Programme, the 4 Living Well UK sites identified their Big Outcomes and built their outcome measurement frameworks, which will allow them to track the impact of the new service model over time. 


Although each site Collaborative had freedom in defining their outcomes, fidelity to the core Living Well principles and values meant that there is strong consistency in outcomes across sites.

The overarching programme evaluation will be monitoring the following core Living Well Outcomes across sites: 

“What attracted me to my role in the prototyping team is it’s an innovative way of working and a breath of fresh air compared to my previous role. What has been missing in services has been found in this project.”

–  Prototyping team member, 

Tameside and Glossop

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Supporting implementation of the
NHS Community Mental Health Framework

The Community Mental Health Framework describes how the Long Term Plan’s vision for a place-based community mental health model can be realised, and how community services should modernise to offer whole-person, whole-population health approaches, aligned with the new Primary Care Networks.

Senior commissioners and other leaders in the Living Well UK programme are positioning the development of new Living Well models in the context of their ambitions to deliver this new framework.


This is because the NHS framework and Living Well share common ground in the following areas:

  • Aims and outcomes - that deliver holistic, person-centred, integrated care

  • Target cohort - supporting people with ‘less complex’ and ‘complex’ needs in populations of 30-50,000 people

  • Service offer and workforce - multi-disciplinary teams delivering clinical and social interventions

  • System change - managing demand differently and achieving greater integration

  • Implementation - fostering collaborative leadership and collaborative commissioning

There is a great deal of interest in England in the opportunity to develop Living Well models that will deliver the new landscape of community provision as set out in the framework.


There is particular interest in ‘the how’ - in other words how to design and run an effective process for developing new models; processes - crucially - that develop the conditions required for genuine co-design, co-production and collaborative leadership and commissioning (across local partners and sectors).

Innovation Unit is therefore keen to support new places in England to plan for implementation and share learning from the Living Well sites.


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