Research & Policy - Community Hospitals

Policy Direction for Health and Social Care in the UK


There are proposals for policy changes in health and care across the UK. The CHA has formed a group to assess the proposals, and make contributions to the policy thinking.  The group is assessing the impact on community health and wellbeing in rural areas, and the implications and potential for community hospitals and services.  The 4Nations group are:

Dr Alastair Noble MBE - CHA lead for Scotland

Tom Brooks - CHA lead for Wales

Dr Shauna Fannin - CHA lead for Northern Ireland

Chris Humphris - CHA lead for England





"Integration and Innovation : working together to improve health and care for all"  Feb 2021 White Paper - read more here




CHA contributes to Proposals for Health and Care Services in Wales


Tom Brooks, the CHA lead for Wales, has carefully crafted a response to the White Paper on behalf of the CHA  ("Rebalancing Care and Support." read here  )

His response can be read  here 

  • Tom expresses the opinion that the White Paper proposals, if implemented, would be detrimental to those in our population who need care and support.
  • Tom recommends that the proposals in the White Paper are not proceeded with.
  • Alternative approaches to rebalancing are offered, with proposals for Rebalancing Care – Rebuilding Care Differently – the Critical Role of Community Hospitals 

The paper provides an invaluable summary of the current and potential role of community hospitals and community health and care services for the future, and recommends further research.  Tom has commented on the White Paper in the context of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which he says has had a greater impact on health care services than realised. Tom advises that this context requires radical thinking with regard to the redesign of health and care for the future.  Tom has evidenced his paper, and draws in his extensive international experience, as well as his in-depth knowledge of UK health systems. 




"NHS is Scotland 2020."   Feb 2021  Auditor General Report, Audit Scotland  - read more here

"Independent Review of Adult Social in Scotland" Feeley report  Feb 2021 - read more here

"Re-mobilise, Recover, Re-design: The Framework for NHS Scotland"  - read more here

"Moving Forward with Health and Social Care Integration in Scotland"  Dr Alastair Noble Jan 2021 - read more here


Northern Ireland

"Transforming your care: Vision to Action"  2013  Health Policy - read more here



"The Economics of Biodiversity - The Dasgupta Review" - read more here 



The CHA and Research 


The CHA actively encourages research and evaluation in community hospitals in order to inform practice and improve patient care.

  • Applying knowledge from research
  • Transferring learning from good practice
  • Informing planning for appropriate services
  • Sharing ways in which communities support their community hospital
  • Securing excellence in patient care
  • Bringing new knowledge, information, evidence, updates and resources on community hospitals.

The CHA has been making a case for a funded programme of research for many years, and was delighted that the NIHR  accorded this a priority by funding a programme of 3 major studies.   The CHA was pleased to be involved with each study and also to be on the project board of the cross-study group. 

Read about the studies here:  Value of Community Hospitals, Effectiveness and Efficiency of Community Hospitals, and International Learning on Community Hospitals.


We continue to support research on all aspects of community hospital services. Such as the study: 

 Improving care in community hospitals and during clinical uncertainty for older people and their families. To learn more follow the link here.