UK steps towards health protection reform:
This article was originally published in Clinica
The UK has moved a step closer to the inauguration of the new national Health Protection Agency (HPA), with the appointment of Pat Troop as chief executive. The HPA, which becomes operational on April 1 2003, brings together the functions of most of the Public Health Laboratory Service, the Centre for Applied Microbiology and Research, the National Focus for Chemical Incidents and other health protection consultants and regional staff. It will be responsible for regulating biological, chemical and radiological hazards, as well as infectious disease control and health emergency planning. Subject to legislation, the HPA may become a non-departmental public body, taking on the functions of the National Radiological Protection Board. Dr Troop is currently deputy chief medical officer of the Department of Health.