Health + social care


The Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector has a significant role to play in the delivery of health and social care services. Just over a quarter of voluntary sector organisations and a third of all social enterprises are involved in the provision of adult health and/or social care. This accounts for more than £4 billion worth of public sector funding.

Yet there are fears from the VCSE sector that much of the progress that has been made in the last ten years when it comes to their role in delivering health will be overlooked in the restructures. We are working to ensure that this is not the case, and seek to work with the changing environment and the new evolving structures to make certain that the value and role of the VCSE sector is fully understood and able to fully participate in the health and social care economy.


Social Enterprise UK coordinates the spin-out network - a regular meeting for its members that have spun out of the NHS or a local authority.

The network of around 40 spin-outs meets quarterly and provides a supportive environment for peers to discuss key challenges and share their learning around commissioning, governance, recruitment, finance issues and more.

SEUK provides the secretariat for the group and delivers an annual work plan agreed by the network which includes:

  • Bespoke training
  • Lobbying on behalf of the network
  • Undertaking research for the network
  • Promoting the work of spin-outs

Who are spin-outs?

Organisations that have emerged from Primary Care Trusts and other parts of an evolving public sector, and established as independent social enterprises. They deliver community health, mental health, public health and social care services worth almost a billion pounds per year, often with significant multi-year contracts. 

Some identify themselves as mutuals, some as employee-owned businesses, and some have developed models of service user or community ownership. Some emerged very recently, while others have now been trading for a number of years.

For more information about the network, please email Social Enterprise UK's Deputy CEO Nick Temple:

Lyn Bacon, Chief Executive of Nottingham CityCare Partnership CIC, says:

"Since becoming a social enterprise we are much more in tune with our stakeholders, and our staff have never been this engaged or motivated. Members of the team have genuine ownership, and the result is that they’re creative and not afraid to challenge traditional ways of thinking.

Being in control means we’re able to provide a diverse range of services that truly work for people in our community. It’s opened our eyes to a new way of working."


The Right to Run

For public sector staff thinking about taking up the opportunities being offered them to provide services themselves, independently of the public sector, by setting up a social enterprise. Aims to be of use to staff in Local Authorities, NHS Trusts and other public bodies; from frontline clinicians and corporate services professionals through to senior managers, board and council members.

Spin Out, Step Up: A report on the finance challenge for health & social care spin outs 

Aims to increase understanding of the finance needs of the health and social care spin-out social enterprises; and to prompt the development of appropriate investment solutions to address those needs.


Delivering Social Value in Health Programme

This programme focuses on the value that a partnership approach can bring to the developing health and care systems. Over three years we are supporting twelve areas to embed social value in health and care procurement. This programme is designed to support local areas to deliver and commission for social value in health and care.

Building Health Partnerships Programme

Supported by NHS England and jointly delivered by Social Enterprise UK (SEUK) and the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR), this programme is designed to support local partners in health and care to focus on the mutual benefit of strong and informed CCG and Public Health engagement with the local voluntary, community and social enterprise sector and the development of a range of activities that support health and wellbeing in the local community.