Health Protection Agency

The Health Protection Agency is a non-departmental public body in the United Kingdom. It is an organisation that was set up by the UK government in 2003 to protect the public in England from threats to their health from infectious diseases and environmental hazards. It does this by providing advice and information to the general public, to health professionals such as doctors and nurses, and to national and local government. There are four HPA centres - at Porton Down in Salisbury, Chilton in Didcot, South Mimms in Hertfordshire, and Colindale in NW London. In addition, the HPA has regional laboratories across England and administrative headquarters in Central London. In April 2013, the HPA minus the South Mimms site will become part of Public Health England, a new executive agency of the Department of Health (DoH). The NIBSC located in South Mimms will be merged with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

HPA's role is to provide an integrated approach to protecting public health in the UK by providing emergency services, support and advice to the National Health Service (NHS) and local authorities, other Arms Length Bodies, the Department of Health and the Devolved Administrations. HPA also has a lead role in helping preparations for new and emerging health threats, such as a bioterrorism or in the event of an emerging virulent disease strain.

Read more about Health Protection Agency:  History, Funding, Microbiology Services, Health Protection Services, Centre For Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards (CRCE), Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC), Health Protection Agency Annual Conference

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