UK HEALTH SECURITY AGENCY
UK Health Security Agency
Replacing Public Health England in 2021, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is a government agency for UK-wide public health protection, eg: infectious diseases, chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear incidents and other health threats, and falls under the Department of Health and Social Care.
While some welcomed the change, the timing of the reorganisation, during the COVID pandemic, was criticised by health experts and other bodies, including the editorial in the BMJ, the Institute for Government, the King's Fund, and Christina Marriott, the chief executive of the Royal Society for Public Health.
A Guardian editorial compared it to "reorganising a fire brigade as it tries to put out a blaze" and said the decision had been made without proper consultation or scrutiny. The editorial goes on to say " Research from the Health Foundation showed a reduction of almost 25% in public health spending per person between 2014-15 and 2019-20. PHE itself has an annual budget of just £300m – compared with the £10bn given to Serco, Sitel and other companies for test and trace, with very poor results."
The Guardian | 18 Aug 2020↑ Back to top