July 2014

National Evaluation of the Prime Minister's Challenge Fund: Improving Access to Primary Care


In October 2013, the Prime Minister announced that a £50m challenge fund would be set up to improve access to general practice and stimulate innovative ways of providing primary care services. Following a competitive bidding process, 20 pilots were launched in April 2014 to test new models of delivery.

On behalf of NHS England, SQW in collaboration with Mott Macdonald, was commissioned to undertake an evaluation of the challenge fund over its one-year duration (June 2014 – July 2015). The evaluation is using a mixed methods approach to assess the progress made across the pilot sites, identify key areas of innovation, and share the lessons learned, as well as providing wide-ranging support to the pilots to inform national and local data collection and interpretation.

The findings of the evaluation will be communicated on a regular basis through a series of reports to NHS England, as well as best practice papers and other materials to share lessons among the pilot areas and wider stakeholders. As a flagship initiative, the evaluation will play a key role in building the evidence base on how new models of general practice and primary care can be delivered in England and more widely.

For further information, please contact Graham Thom