Developing and evaluating an economic and ethic

Developing and evaluating an economic and ethico-legal framework for priority setting in health and social care Dates: May 2017 – February 2021 Funder: Chief Scientist Office

Description: Health and Social Care Partnerships (HSCPs), created in Scotland, are collaborations between the NHS and local authorities, with third-sector representation. HSCPs make joint decisions about budgets for primary, community, social and some acute hospital care; thirty-one HSCPs manage approximately £8billion of resources.

Decisions about how to allocate resources fairly and efficiently are very difficult, particularly with limited health care resources. Frameworks to aid such decisions have been developed separately within disciplines and have never been evaluated. This research is leading-edge; developing and implementing the first framework for making difficult decisions that integrates economics, decision-analysis, ethics and law.


  • To develop and implement a unified priority setting framework, based on principles of economics, decision analysis, ethics and law, for use in health and social care commissioning.
  • To evaluate the impact of using such a framework both within and between HSCPs in Scotland.

Project Lead: Professor Cam Donaldson

Project Team: Marissa Collins, Professor Rachel Baker, Dr Micaela Mazzei, Professor Alec Morton (University of Strathclyde) Dr Lucy Frith (University of Liverpool), Professor Keith Syrett (University of Bristol)

Sustainable Development Goals