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Department of Health

Care Act 2014: How should local authorities deliver the care and support reforms? Please give us your views


Market shaping and commissioning

The Act introduces new duties on local authorities to facilitate a vibrant, diverse and sustainable market for high quality care and support in their area, for the benefit of their whole local population, regardless of how the services are funded.

The local authority’s own commissioning and procurement practices should take account of these wider ‘market shaping’ duties.

The draft guidance on market shaping and commissioning covers:

  • the principles which should underpin market-shaping and commissioning activity, including:

    • focusing on outcomes and wellbeing
    • promoting quality services, including through workforce development and remuneration and ensuring appropriately resourced care and support
    • supporting sustainability, and ensuring choice
  • the steps which local authorities should take to develop and implement local approaches to market-shaping and commissioning, including:

    • designing strategies that meet local needs
    • engaging with providers and local communities
    • understanding and facilitating the development of the market
    • securing supply in the market and assuring its quality through contracting
  • Read Factsheet 10: market oversight and provider failure

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