Health Protection Agency

The Health Protection Agency (HPA), originally established as a special health authority (SpHA) in 2003, is an Non-Departmental Public Body charged with protecting the health and well-being of the United Kingdom citizens from infectious diseases and in preventing harm and reducing impacts when hazards involving chemicals, poisons or radiation occur. On April 1, 2005, the Agency was established as a non-departmental public body, replacing the HPA SpHA and the National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB).

Health protection role

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 UK Department of Health (DoH) 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.

Anthrax vaccine

The HPA is the sole licensed manufacturer of the anthrax vaccine in the UK


HPA is accountable to the UK Secretary of State for Health, and is funded primarily by Government Grant in Aid. Other income is received from the NHS, commercial activities, grants, and other sources. HPA’s annual income for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2005, was £203.3 million. HPA employed 2,871 staff as of that fiscal year.

Porton Down Centre

Internationally recognised as a world leader in microbiology research and testing, HPA's Porton Down Centre (formerly the Centre for Applied Microbiology & Research) works with foreign governments, international biotechnology and pharmaceutical corporations, and start-up and spin-out companies. The strategic goal of the Centre is "to build on and develop the intellectual assets of the organisation in partnership with industry." Areas of expertise include: bacterial vaccines, toxin therapeutics, Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) and in-vivo testing of compounds, biodefence and biosafety testing, diagnostics, and the provision of cell cultures.

Health Protection Agency Annual Conference

The Health Protection Agency Annual Conference, which is attended by approximately one thousand health professionals and scientists to promote scientific excellence and best practice in health protection and emergency planning, brings together experts from a wide variety of disciplines to share knowledge of the latest scientific research and developments.

See also

External links

  • - Health Protection Agency official homepage

* - 'Health Protection Agency Annual Conference'

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