Results for 'evaluation'
BUCKLAND Leonora, FIENNES Caroline
To investigate what may need to happen to help mental health charities make more evidence-informed decisions, this report examines how UK charities delivering mental health services currently produce, synthesise, disseminate and use evidence within their organisation. Semi-structured qualitative interviews with 12 mental health service delivery charities of varying sizes and qualitative interviews with four mental health sector experts were carried out. The project used an inclusive definition of evidence comprising: evaluation evidence, user feedback; practitioner evidence and contextual evidence (e.g., research into the prevalence or type of need). In relation to the production of evidence, the report found that mental health charities have focused primarily on producing practitioner and stakeholder evidence. Although larger charities are beginning to carry out more evaluation research, lack of resources remain a problem. It also identified little evidence produced by the charities interviewed being routinely synthesised or included in systematic reviews; weak dissemination channels; and little use of third-party evidence when making decisions. Although the number of charities interviewed was small, the report identifies some important gaps including: the need for more rigorous evaluation research about the effectiveness of charities’ interventions; the potential to make more use of existing the academic literature; and, for more evidence to be actively disseminated within the sector to enable greater learning. Recommendations to improve evidence systems are also included.
Evaluation of the Wigan Community Link Worker (CLW) service, which was set up as a pilot in 2015 to improve the health and wellbeing of local people by helping them to access community based support and activities. It also helps those referred to use their skills and experience through volunteering. The evaluation, commissioned by Wigan Borough CCG and Wigan Council, aims to gain a better understanding of how the service is working, who is using it and what difference it is making to clients and referring services. The evaluation draws on an analysis of referral data, case studies and qualitative interviews with commissioners, people running services, patients, community link workers and representatives of voluntary and community organisations. Findings report high levels of commitment to the service from stakeholders, with health and care professionals valuing the service and promoting it to colleagues and clients. A total of 784 clients were supported between January 2015 and March 2016. Over half of these clients were over 55, with social isolation and mental health issues the most recurrent presenting issues, along with benefits and financial advice. The service is also used by number of carers. Client stories suggest that CLWs help them to feel supported and able to contribute in their community. The evaluation also found anecdotal evidence of reduced pressure on mainstream services. Recommendations include that the service retains it wide referral and low threshold for access; development of the skills of CLWs as relational workers through peer support and reflective practice; and enlists CLWs, clients and health professionals in co-designing and co-producing the service in the future.
Final evaluation of the Reducing Social Isolation and Loneliness Grant programme, designed to encourage the voluntary and community sector (VCS) to develop innovative approaches to reduce social isolation and loneliness amongst Manchester residents aged 50 plus. The programme was commissioned and funded by North, Central and South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), and administered and managed by Manchester Community Central (Macc). It awarded nine large (£10,000-£50,000) and eighteen small grants (less than £10,000) to local VCS organisations across Manchester's three Clinical Commissioning Group areas. This report provides an overview of the programme and discusses evidence of impact in the following areas: reducing social isolation and loneliness; improving confidence and independence; and improving health, wellbeing and quality of life. It also looks at learning from the project around identifying socially isolated and lonely people and engaging with, and retaining, people's involvement in initiatives. The evaluation reported increased social connections, with almost all respondents (97 per cent) meeting new people through the project; the creation of new friendships; increased quality of life; and improvements in self-reported health. It demonstrates that VCS-led model are capable of delivering desired outcomes and also highlights the importance of effective partnership arrangements between VCS umbrella organisations and CCG funders. Individual case studies showcasing learning and impact evidence from the individual projects are included in the appendices.
Evaluation of the Tinder Foundation and NHS England Widening Digital Participation programme, which set out to improve the digital health skills of people in hard-to-reach communities in order to help them take charge of their own heath. It aimed to ensure that health inequalities resulting from digital exclusion do not become more pronounced. The programme involved: building a Digital Health Information network of local providers who provided face-to-face support to help people improve their skills; developing digital health information; supporting people to access health information online and learn how to complete digital medical transactions; and funding Innovation Pathfinder organisations to test innovative approaches to help people improve their digital health skills. This report evaluates the key figures and learning from the final year of the project and also provides a summary of the key findings across the three-year programme. It discusses the scale and impact of behaviour change on frontline services; priority audiences participating, including people with dementia and people with learning disabilities; and new models of care. The evaluation found that during the duration of the project 221,941 people were trained to use digital health resources. This has resulted in more people using the internet as their first port of call for information, and potential savings from reduced GP and A&E visits. The report estimates that the combined annual cost savings of reduced visits to GPs and A&E comes to approximately £6 millon against an NHS investment of £810,000 in year three.
APTELIGEN, et al
An evaluation of Prevention Matters, a whole county change programme designed to facilitate access to frontline community services and groups in Buckinghamshire. The programme targets those whose needs are below the substantial need threshold for adult social care, building on a referral system, rather than on direct support. Fourteen Community Practice Workers (CPWs) are aligned to the seven GP localities in Buckinghamshire, and lead on the referral process, from first contact with the users to final review and exit. The CPWs are supported by seven Community Links Officers who ensure that the necessary resources are available in the community to meet users’ needs, including identification of opportunities to build new capacity. A wide network of frontline community services and groups provides direct face-to-face support to users through activities such as befriending, transport, fitness, and lunch clubs. The evaluation found that the potential to maintain independence and delay access to adult social care may be less than originally intended as a result of the complexity of the needs and frailty of some programme users. Nonetheless, nearly half of all programme users reported improvement in their satisfaction with the level of social contact they had and a third of programme users reported that their quality of life was better at the review stage compared to the time of their baseline assessment. In addition, the evaluation concluded that the programme has been particularly successful at facilitating access to information. The analysis indicates that the benefits associated with the programme are £1,000 per user per year, including the value of the improvements in health suggested by the impact evaluation (£500), and estimated spill-over effects on the need for informal social care (£492). The report also highlights the positive impact on organisations and systems, and increased volunteering capacity and sets out a series of recommendations to strengthen the delivery of the programme.
An evaluation of the current position of health and wellbeing boards (HWBs), which seeks to identify features and factors that influence whether or not a board makes significant progress. The report draws on information from interviews with 23 local and national stakeholders involved with HWBs; a workshop with people doing bespoke work with boards on behalf of the Local Government Association; observation of and a focus group discussion at a HWB leadership essentials course; and a review of eight health and wellbeing peer challenges. The report identifies a number of factors which have a significant influence on the effectiveness of a HWB. Factors identified are: committed leadership; a history of collaboration between health and social care; clarity of purpose; a geography that works; the response to austerity; a focus on place; a director of public health who understands the role of HWB; high quality day-to-day support; changes in board membership and leadership; and good basic housekeeping to enable effective leadership. The final section of the report summarises key actions and areas to address if boards are to be more effective. The report concludes that a small but significant number of health and wellbeing boards (HWBs) are now beginning to play a genuine leadership role across the local health and care system. It finds that boards are considerably more effective than they were a year ago and a number of other boards are on the cusp of making that shift. Most boards are doing useful work, but their potential remains unfulfilled.
This report details the interim findings of the evaluation of the third phase of the Music in Mind (MiM) project. MiM is a music therapy group run by Manchester Camerata that offers free music therapy sessions for people with dementia (PWD) and their carers. The sessions aim to improve the quality of life and wellbeing of the attendees through music making. The report provides a brief introduction to the MiM project and summarises the findings of a literature review. It then presents the participants’ views of the MiM, as recorded in their diaries or communicated through interviews, and discusses key findings. The key themes that emerge from the evaluation are linked to the mood of the service users: feeling calmer, happier, energised and/or relaxed. Improvements were also noted in PWD’s memory and recollection, confidence levels and relationships with carers. However the extent of other benefits appears to vary greatly depending on the type of dementia the service users’ are living with and the severity of their symptoms. The findings of this evaluation seem to be in line with the literature, suggesting that MIM appears to promote general wellbeing amongst participants and have a positive impact on relationships.
UNIVERSITY OF YORK. Centre for Reviews and Dissemination
Summarises the findings of a rapid appraisal of available evidence on the effectiveness of social prescribing. Social prescribing is a way of linking patients in primary care with sources of support within the community, and can be used to improve health and wellbeing. For the review searches were conducted on the databases: DARE, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and NHS EED for relevant systematic reviews and economic evaluations. Additional searches were also carried out on MEDLINE, ASSIA, Social Policy and Practice, NICE, SCIE and NHS. Very little good quality evidence was identified. Most available evidence described evaluations of pilot projects but failed to provide sufficient detail to judge either success or value for money. The briefing calls for better evaluation of new schemes. It recommends that evaluation should be of a comparative design; examine for whom and how well a scheme works; the effect it has and its costs.
DAYKIN Norma, JOSS Tim
Guidance on appropriate ways of documenting the impacts of arts for health and wellbeing, whether through small scale project evaluations or large scale research studies. The document suggests a standard framework for reporting of project activities that will strengthen understanding of what works in specific contexts and enable realistic assessment and appropriate comparisons to be made between programmes. Part one provides background discussion to help make sense of the framework and includes a discussion of evaluation principles and practice, encompassing project planning, the role of advocacy and the importance of consultation and stakeholder involvement. In part two the different types of evaluation are outlined, with suggested tools for arts for health and wellbeing evaluation, including outcomes measurement. Part three captures the key components of project delivery, including the nature of the intervention, the populations engaged, the settings where the project takes place, the resources needed to support it, procedures for quality assurance, and the outcomes that the project is designed to achieve. Evaluation details are also sets out to encourage clear identification of important aspects such as rationale, evaluation questions, evaluation design, sampling, data collection and analysis, process evaluation, ethics and consent, reporting and dissemination, evaluation management and the resources needed to undertake evaluation.
PERSONAL SOCIAL SERVICES RESEARCH UNIT
This briefing summarises the findings of a study to establish the costs, outputs and outcomes of a number of four best practice community capacity-building projects, especially in relation to their potential for alleviating pressures on adult social care budgets and in the context of current policy interests. All projects worked under financial uncertainties and these challenges highlighted a poor fit between third sector infrastructures and the public sector’s growing requirements for targeted, evidence-based investments. The four projects evaluated comprised support services for people with disabilities, a help-at-home scheme for older people, a training scheme to produce local health champions and a peer-support project for people with mental health issues. Such third sector approaches may postpone or replace formal social care, but projects found it difficult to meet demands for data, whether for making a business case or for the purposes of research. The study found that well-targeted schemes have the potential to produce both benefits to participants and substantial savings to public agencies. Yet the current commissioning context tends to encourage organisations to focus on established priorities rather than to develop innovative, community-based services.