UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA)
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) formerly PHE, is an executive agency, sponsored by the Department of Health and Social Care.
UKHSA exist to protect and improve the nation’s health and wellbeing, and reduce health inequalities. UKHSA do this through world-leading science, knowledge and intelligence, advocacy, partnerships and providing specialist public health services.
UKHSA are responsible for:
- making the public healthier and reducing differences between the health of different groups by promoting healthier lifestyles, advising government and supporting action by local government, the NHS and the public
- Protecting the nation from public health hazards.
- Preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.
-Improving the health of the whole population by sharing our information and expertise, and identifying and preparing for future public health challenges.
- Supporting local authorities and the NHS to plan and provide health and social care services such as immunisation and screening programmes, and to develop the public health system and its specialist workforce.
- Researching, collecting and analysing data to improve our understanding of public health challenges, and come up with answers to public health problems
Mr Thomas Pottage
BSc Hons, Medical Microbiology
P67 Key Expert- Biological Waste Management
Thomas Pottage is a project team leader in the Biosafety, Air and Water Microbiology group at Public Health England, UK. He has been part of the group for over 13 years, having previously worked on the UK’s national Scrapie plan for Orchid Bioscience. Thomas has worked on a range of projects during his employment at PHE within the Biosafety, CBRN, waste management, aerobiology, environmental microbiology and decontamination fields. He has been involved in a number of projects investigating Biosafety and Biocontainment, through both practical and desk-based studies. Thomas has worked within the CBRN and waste management fields for a number of UK Home Office projects managing the production of the UK Recovery Handbook for Biological Incidents. The UKRHBI guides the user through an evidence-based framework to identify the most appropriate recovery and waste management options after deliberate, accidental or environmental contamination of a range of areas. The UKRHBI project also involved delivering training on how to use the Handbook to attendees from a wide selection of disciplines.
Thomas is an experienced trainer in Biosafety and Biosecurity, and Good Microbiological Practice both in the UK and internationally, having delivered high containment working courses in the UK and Jordan. More recently he helped deliver the Biosafety and Biosecurity and Train the Trainer for laboratory workers in Kazakhstan and Tajikistan on the CBRN CoE P53. During the West Africa Ebola outbreak, he was team lead for the European Mobile Laboratory whilst in Liberia, working at high containment within a low resource infrastructure. As part of the EU Horizon 2020 project European Research Infrastructure on Highly Pathogenic Agents (ERINHA) Thomas completed a large literature review investigating the evidence base for containment and engineering controls within high containment facilities. Thomas is a key team member on multiple multinational projects for both the European Commission and European Space Agency.
Dr Samuel Collins, MBMedsMaster, PhD
Group Leader, Chemicals and Poisons
P67 Senior Non-Key Expert
Several years’ basic and applied post-doctoral experience in public health research and response. For the past 6 years has worked as a technical project lead and project manager of complex national and international projects in biological and chemical health threats. Has significant experience in organising and leading stakeholder workshops, developing and delivering training (in low-middle-income countries), report writing, publishing and developing technical guidance for national and international public health incidents. Sam undertook two deployments to Sierra Leone during the Ebola outbreak response. Sam is currently leading and contributing to chemical risk assessment, decontamination, recovery and capacity building projects as well as leading PHEs technical input into CBRN CoE Project 61.