NHS & New Models of Care including ICS, ICP and PCNs


Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS) is a partnership of a wide range of organisations working together to improve services and help the 1.8 million people in Lancashire and South Cumbria live longer, healthier lives; working together as an integrated care system (ICS). The aims of the partnership are to join up health and care services; to listen to the priorities within our communities, local people and patients; and to tackle some of the biggest challenges we are all facing. Integrated Care System (ICS) Primary Care Networks (PCNs) PCNs Across Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS England Animation

Integrated Care System (ICS)

The ICS is split up into five local areas, known as integrated care partnerships (ICPs) –

  • Bay Health and Care Partners
  • Blackpool and Fylde Coast
  • Central Lancashire
  • Pennine Lancashire
  • West Lancashire

Further information about Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS) and the integrated care system (ICS) can be found at – https://www.healthierlsc.co.uk/

Further information about ICSs across England can be found at https://psnc.org.uk/the-healthcare-landscape/sustainability-and-transformation-plans/

Primary Care Networks (PCNs)

What are Primary Care Networks (PCNs)?

With the publication of the NHS Long Term Plan has come the advent of Primary Care Networks (PCNs). General practices across the whole of Lancashire and South Cumbria are included or linked to one of the 42 primary care networks that have been established in the footprint of the Integrated Care System (ICS). A PCN is based on general practice registered lists, typically serving natural communities of around 30,000 to 50,000 patients, being small enough to provide the personal care valued by both patients and healthcare professionals, but large enough to have impact and economies of scale through better collaboration between general practices who are also working with a range of local providers in the local health and social care system; this includes community pharmacies.

In early 2019, general practices in England received an extension to their GP contract in NHS England’s five-year framework for GP services: the Network Contract (which is a Directed Enhanced Service (DES)) meaning that PCNs go live on the 1st July 2019. The DES will enable GP practices to play a leading role in every PCN.

Each PCN must appoint a Clinical Director as its named, accountable leader, responsible for delivery, who will also provide strategic and clinical leadership to help support change across primary and community health services.

A PCN cannot exist without its constituent practices, but its membership and purpose should be much wider. The NHS Long Term Plan sets out a clear ambition to deliver ‘triple integration’ of primary and specialist care, physical and mental health services, and health with social care.

All PCNs will have a Network Agreement which sets out its collective rights and obligations as well as how it will partner with non-GP practice stakeholders. It will also include a patient data-sharing requirement, in order to support safe and effective delivery of patient care. PCNs will be the foundation of all ICSs and every ICS will have a critical role in ensuring that PCNs work in an integrated way with other community staff and providers; collaboration arrangements with other local organisations will form a distinct part of every Network Agreement.

CPL is already working with the leadership of each of our 5 ICPs, along with the emerging leadership of each of the 42 PCNs; to ensure that community pharmacy is absolutely represented within each PCN.

CPL has been working across our footprint, where we have 36 of the 42 PCNs in the ICS (the remainder sit within the boundary of Community Pharmacy Cumbria) to support contractors in selecting a Pharmacy PCN Lead for each of their PCNs and supporting the lead and the contractors in working together collaboratively on topics such as the Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) Part 2 2020/21 Pharmacy Quality Scheme 2020/21 and the GP referral pathway for the Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (GP CPCS) .

We actively encourage contractors and their teams to participate in their local PCN meetings and activities wherever possible, and engage with local GP practices on topical issues, such as electronic Repeat Dispensing and flu vaccinations, to seek to build relationships and trust. Ideally relationships should be built with GPs, other clinicians, including clinical or practice pharmacists, practice managers and other support team members. This work is separate from any work the pharmacy lead for the PCN may undertake at a network level.

PCNs across Lancashire & South Cumbria

Across Lancashire & South Cumbria there are 42 PCNs: View the list on the Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System website: https://www.healthierlsc.co.uk/primarycare/primary-care-networks

NHS England animation

There is a short NHS England animation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W19DtEsc8Ys that explains the concept of PCNs and how this new way of working enables health professionals and other services to work together to provide better access for patients.

More information about PCNs can be found from nationally based websites:

NHS websites:

PSNC website:

and at a more local level from HL&SC website: