Integrated care systems and integrated care boards in England
NHS England established 42 statutory integrated care boards (ICBs) on 1 July 2022 in line with its duty in the Health and Care Act 2022. This was as part of the Act’s provisions for creating integrated care systems (ICSs).
ICSs are partnerships of NHS bodies and local authorities, working with other relevant local organisations, that come together to plan and deliver joined up health and care services to improve the lives of people in their area.
Each ICS has an integrated care board, which is a statutory NHS organisation responsible for developing a plan in collaboration with NHS trusts/foundation trusts and other system partners for meeting the health needs of the population, managing the NHS budget and arranging for the provision of health services in the defined area.
NHS England made the Integrated Care Boards (Establishment) Order 2022 under section 14Z25 of the NHS Act 2006 (as inserted by the Health and Care Act 2022), establishing 42 ICBs with effect from 1 July 2022. The order specifies the name and area of each ICB, which are also included in each board’s constitution, and gives legal effect to the constitutions.
The Integrated Care Boards (Establishment) (Variation) Order 2023 makes minor updates to The Integrated Care Boards (Establishment) Order 2022 with effect from 1 April 2023.
Where any change to existing areas is being considered, the ICS boundary changes and mergers procedure should be followed, noting that any change to an ICB area is also a change to the ICS area.
The documents describing how each ICB makes its decisions are brought together in its Governance Handbook which is available on its website. ICB governance documents include its constitution, regulating the composition and operation of its board, which can only be amended with the approval of NHS England.
In addition, there is information about integrated care board leaders and links to the local integrated care system websites.