There are so many different organisations involved in the UK medical sector that it can be confusing to understand what each of them does, what they’re responsible for, and the influence they have. If you’re baffled by the number of organisations, we’ve taken a look at eight of the most prominent to give you a quick overview.

General Medical Council

The primary role of the GMC is to set standards for both medical students and practising doctors across the UK, ensuing that patient care is consistently. The organisation oversees the education and training that’s in place across the country, decides which doctors are qualified to practise in the UK, sets and regulates standards, and where necessary take action against doctors that do meet minimum standards.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence

NICE provides national guidance and advice to improve health and social care. Working closely with industry practitioners, NICE produce evidence backed guides and advice that they can act on to improve care and maximise resources. The body also has a responsibility for developing quality standards and performance metrics that are used across the county.

The World Health Organisation

The WHO doesn’t have a direct influence in the UK health and care system, but it does have an impact. Working across the UN, WHO directs and coordinates international health, including health systems. Evolving from an organisation that aimed to control infectious diseases, this still plays an important role in its mission.

Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission regulates health and social care in England independently. Among its roles are registering care providers, inspecting and rating services, and providing support to protect people. Through its role, the organisation also speaks out on quality issues, bringing them attention to exact change.

British Medical Association

If you’re a doctor, BMA is your trade union and professional body. It’s an organisation that’s well placed to offer employment advice and help you progress towards career development goals. It also acts as a network to connect professionals to further research, improve standards, and more. As a trade union, BMA can also provide support when it’s needed, such as access to legal solutions.

The Medical Research Council

The Medical Research Council aims to improve the health in the UK through supporting scientists in the industry. The organisation’s commitment has resulted in life-changing discoveries that then influence the health sector in the UK and further afield.

The Department of Health and Social Care

The Department of Health influences the sector by being responsible by creating national policies and legislation, providing long-term vision across the whole of the industry. It’s this organisation that ensures health remains at the heart of the government. The role of this department was expanded in January 2018 to include social care.