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Tectonic plates: aligning evidence, policy and practice in health and social care integration

Alison Petch (Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (IRISS), Glasgow, UK)

Journal of Integrated Care

ISSN: 1476-9018

Article publication date: 30 March 2012



This review aims to focus on the role of evidence in informing policy and practice in health and social care integration.


Following discussion of the importance of defining the terms that are being used, the review addresses UK policy and practice developments in respect of integrated health and social care over the last two decades. It explores the extent to which these accord with the available evidence on effective strategies.


The review demonstrates that the focus in delivering integrated care should be on the local systems and cultures that can deliver positive outcomes for individuals. Structural change will not guarantee integrated care and diverts from the detail of local implementation that needs to be achieved. Current developments in both Scotland and England have some promise of delivering enduring progress.


The review provides a synthesis of key bodies of evidence and allows comparison between different polities within the UK.



Petch, A. (2012), "Tectonic plates: aligning evidence, policy and practice in health and social care integration", Journal of Integrated Care, Vol. 20 No. 2, pp. 77-88.



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Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited