The HRA was established in December 2011. Its main purposes now, in accordance with the Care Act 2014, are to protect and promote the interest of patients and the public in health and social care research, co-ordinate and standardise practices relating to regulation, recognise and establish Research Ethics Committees (RECs), be a member of UK Ethics Committee Authority (UKECA), promote transparency in research and provide approvals for the processing of confidential information relating to patients.
Many members of the public want the opportunity to participate in research. We make sure that health and social care research involving them is ethically reviewed and approved, that people are provided with the information they need to help them decide whether they wish to take part, and that their opportunity to do so is maximised by simplifying the processes by which high quality research is assessed. In doing this, we will help to build both public confidence and participation in health research, and so improve the nation’s health.