About us

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.


See our latest news stories, announcements and statements; the section includes a searchable archive.

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Who we are

Discover more about our vision, to make the UK a great place for health and social care research, our aims and our values.

More on who we are

What we do

Find our history, more about our committees for research ethics, confidentiality and gene therapy advice and about our panel of ethics advisers.

More on what we do

Our plans and projects

Find out the latest position of our projects, including the HRA Approval and our plans to increase transparency in health research.

More about our plans and projects

Our board

This section introduces our board members, also containing our board papers and details of future board meetings.

More about our board

Our governance

Understand our performance, how our governance works (including equality and diversity and accessibility) and the role of our quality team.

More on our governance