NHS England has confirmed four new integrated care systems (ICS) in England, joining the 14 already in existence plus two devolved health systems in Greater Manchester and Surrey.

The moves sees around half of England’s population now served by such a system, including the whole of Yorkshire (with the confirmation of an ICS covering Humber, Coast and Vale) and all of London south of the river Thames (with South West London joining its neighbour in South East London).

The two other partnerships confirmed are one covering Sussex and another in Hertfordshire and West Essex.

ICSs bring together local organisations to deliver the ‘triple integration’ of primary and specialist care, physical and mental health services, and health with social care.

They will have a key role in working with local authorities at ‘place’ level, and through ICSs, commissioners will make shared decisions with providers on population health, service redesign and NHS Long Term Plan implementation, NHS England said.

Also, it noted that ICSs and sustainability and transformation partnerships (STPs) have been central to the co-ordination and delivery of the response to the COVID-19 health emergency.