Who we are

People being consulted at a meeting

The MHRA is responsible for regulating all medicines and medical devices in the UK by ensuring they work and are acceptably safe. Underpinning all our work lies robust and fact-based judgements to ensure that the benefits justify any risks. 

The MHRA is a centre of the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency which also includes the National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC), (external link)  and the Clinical Practice Research Datalink (CPRD). (external link) The MHRA is an executive agency of the Department of Health.

Watch our video with Ian Hudson, Chief Executive, describing the role of the organisation.

Our vision and values


We protect and improve the health of millions of people every day through the effective regulation of medicines and medical devices, underpinned by science and research.


In pursuing our vision we will strive to be:

  • innovative
  • proactive
  • impartial
  • evidence-based
  • open
  • trustworthy

Our aims and objectives


Our aims are:

  • Protecting public health through regulation, with acceptable benefit-risk profiles for medicines and devices.
  • Promoting public health by helping people who use these products to understand their risks and benefits.
  • Improving public health by encouraging and facilitating developments in products that will benefit people.


Our strategic objectives are to:

  • safeguard public health through our primary role in ensuring that the products we regulate meet required standards, that they work and are acceptably safe
  • carry out our communication role through the provision of accurate, timely and authoritative information to healthcare professionals, patients and the public
  • support research, ensuring through the application of Better Regulation principles that regulation does not stifle innovation
  • influence the shape of the future regulatory framework through use of our effective European and International relationships
  • run an organisation with a skilled and equipped workforce that is fit for the future.

These are achieved through:

  • authorising medicines before they can be marketed, taking both their safety and effectiveness into account
  • ensuring clinical trials meet robust standards and safeguard patient’s interests
  • inspecting the quality of medicines as manufactured and distributed
  • overseeing UK Notified Bodies that audit medical device manufacturers
  • encouraging everyone to report suspected problems with both medicines and devices and then investigating these reports
  • Investigating, and prosecuting where necessary, cases of non-compliance including advertising claims.  

Page last modified: 06 February 2014