Health Protection Agency

Jump to: navigation

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) was established , following a Chief Medical Officer publication "Getting ahead of the curve".

Some would argue that the creation of the HPA was inevitable after the dissolution of Health Authorities, following the "Shifting the Balance of Power" paper, as CsCDC were employed in Health Authorities.

The establishment of a body that would bring together many of the health protection functions traditionally undertaken by CsCDC was viewed as a mixed blessing: optimists hoped that it would create a structure that would make it easier to do Health Protection better; pessimists feared that it would create a large and controlling monolithic entity that would become a bureaucratic nightmare which would stifle initiative and good practice. As yet this argument remains unresolved.

With the passage of the Health and social care act the HPA became ceased to exist, and became the bulk of the new body, Public Health England when it was formed on 1 April.

Health protection is an expression which was created to describe the public health management of communicable diseases, and non-infectious environmental hazards such as toxins, pollution, and radiation. (The expression previously had another meaning, associated with health promotion).

There is a great deal of up-to-date guidance on the management of health protection issues, and data relating to the surveillance of health protection issues, at the HPA web site.

International bodies that are equivalent, or similar, to the Health Protection Agency

These include (and this list is by no means complete):

  • Europe: The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control
  • USA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • International: the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (US-based, but open to members from other countries)
  • WHO: WHO Disease Outbreak News
  • Australia: Department of Health and Ageing
  • France: Institut de veille sanitaire
  • Germany: Robert Koch-Institut (RKI)
  • Ireland: Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC)
  • Italy: Istituto Superiore di Sanità
  • Japan: Infectious Disease Surveillance Centre
  • Netherlands: Rijksinstituut voor Volksgezondheid en Milieu (RIVM)
  • Spain: Centro Nacional de Epidemiología

Other external links

  • Health Protection Agency page at Powerbase Wiki