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It is well known that some groups in the population have significantly poorer health outcomes and worse experiences of using health and care services than others. This has been underlined by the Covid-19 pandemic, with some groups experiencing much higher mortality rates than others. By identifying tackling the worst health outcomes as a strategic priority for 2020–25, The King’s Fund is signalling a new commitment to focusing attention on these issues and working to address them.

What do we want to achieve?

The programme will work with people with lived experience, communities and services to improve health and care for people with the worst health outcomes in England.

This programme will work with organisations and individuals to:

  • develop a much better understanding of the lived experience of people at greatest risk of poor health, so policy and practice can be shaped by those experiences

  • develop and share learning about what works, to support widespread adoption of health and care policy and practices that improve health and wellbeing for people with the worst health outcomes

  • support the health and care system and its partners to work together towards this goal. 

Our focus will be on the critical role the health and care system can play in this by improving services and through working in partnership with other sectors.

What will the programme focus on?

In 2024, The King’s Fund will champion and support work to address health inequalities and tackle the worst health outcomes by:

  • working to ensure this remains a priority for politicians, policy makers and health and care systems by sharing local learning about what works and highlighting national policy changes needed to drive transformation at scale.

  • supporting the health and care system to bring lived experience to bear on policy and practice in a way that enhances the quality of their approach

  • providing leadership support to NHS, local authority and VCSE organisations and sharing insights gained from this work

  • continuing to develop research and sensemaking work about four population groups: disabled people, including learning disabilities, ethnic minority women, inclusion health groups, and left behind neighbourhoods.

  • consolidating and sharing our accumulated knowledge over the lifetime of this priority.

Resources and key projects

Catch up with some of the programme's reports, projects and resources.

  • The health of people from ethnic minority groups in England

    This long read examines ethnic differences in health outcomes, highlighting the variation across ethnic groups and health conditions, and considers what’s needed to reduce health inequal...

  • Healthy Communities Together

    The King's Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund (TNLCF) have joined forces to support genuine partnership-working in local areas between the voluntary and community sector, the N...

Contact us to find out more about this work

See our other priorities

  • Foundations of health and care

    'The foundations of health and care' is one of our strategic priorities. We'll provide analysis, explain key issues and the landscape of the health and care system.

  • Healthy places and communities

    The purpose of our work on healthier places and communities is to support effective place-based working that leads to improved health and wellbeing.

  • Supporting people and leaders

    The aim of this programme is to create a healthier, more inclusive and effective health and care workforce.