Health Anchors Learning Network A UK-wide network for people responsible for, or interested in, anchors approaches to share ideas, knowledge and skills.
- The Health Anchors Learning Network (HALN) aims to build knowledge, skills and expertise to maximise the NHS’ social, economic and environmental impact.
- The HALN is delivered by the Innovation Unit and supported by the Health Foundation and NHS England and NHS Improvement.
What is an anchor institution?
Anchor institutions are large public sector organisations which are rooted in place and connected to their communities, such as universities, local authorities, and hospitals. Anchors have significant assets and spending power and can consciously use these resources to benefit communities.
The Health Foundation report Building healthier communities: The role of the NHS as an anchor institution showcases where NHS organisations are already implementing anchor practices and outlines opportunities for maximising the NHS’s contribution.
What is the Health Anchors Learning Network?
The HALN is a UK-wide network for people who are interested in, or responsible for, anchor approaches to share ideas, knowledge and skills. Through individual and collective learning, participants will become better equipped to implement anchor strategies in practice. This will help maximise the health and care system’s social, economic and environmental impact, improve the social determinants of health and help reduce inequalities.
The HALN is delivered by the Innovation Unit and supported by the Health Foundation and NHS England and NHS Improvement.
What will the Health Anchors Learning Network do?
The network enables participants to:
- share and learn from each other’s diverse experiences
- develop skills and learn from experts from health and care and other sectors
- create innovative practices and establish collaborations
- problem solve together.
The HALN also aims to help connect and share learning across other existing relevant geographic or, thematic networks.
Through its activities, the HALN aims to:
- support NHS anchors at the heart of local partnerships to develop their capacity and capability to maximise the economic, social and environmental impact
- grow the evidence base about the role and impact of anchors
- scale the work of anchors across the UK
- support innovation and inform policy change.
Working in partnership on anchors
The HALN is part of a wider programme of work between the Health Foundation and NHS England and NHS Improvement to explore and enhance to the role of the NHS as an anchor institution. The partnership builds on the Health Foundation’s work on the contribution of the health and care system to improving health and NHS England and NHS Improvement’s commitment to this work in the NHS Long Term Plan.
Colleagues from health organisations, like trusts, hospitals and CCGs; integrated care systems; primary care networks, regional bodies; and partners, like local authorities or other public agencies, voluntary and community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector or educational or housing organisations are welcome to join.
More information about the HALN’s activities and events can be found by:
If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Sign up to the Health Anchors Learning Network launch event on 25 March to hear Dr Bola Owolabi, Director of Health Inequalities at NHS England and Improvement and Jennifer Dixon, CEO of the Health Foundation, discussing how the NHS can utilise its role as an anchor institution to influence the social determinants of health, improve health outcomes and reduce health inequalities and how the new UK-wide Health Anchors Learning Network (HALN) will take this forward.