The HTA was established on 1 April 2005 under the Human Tissue Act 2004 (HT Act) which extends to England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The HTA is an Executive Non-Departmental Public Body (ENDPB) sponsored by the Department of Health.
The Authority’s Chair and 11 Members were appointed by the Secretary of State for Health. The Chair and nine of the members are lay and the remaining two are professionals drawn from some of the groups with a direct interest in the application of the HT Act. The Authority is supported by an Executive of 47 staff.
With the interests of both the public and those we regulate at the centre of our work, our overall strategic goal is to maintain and build confidence in the removal, storage and use of human tissue by ensuring that these activities are undertaken safely and ethically, and with proper consent. The strategic objectives that support this aim and information on how the HTA plans to achieve them are included in the Strategic Plan and the Annual Business Plans.
Download the HTA Business Plan 2012-15
The HTA is responsible for achieving its policies, aims and objectives, whilst safeguarding the public funds and assets. The Chief Executive, acts as the HTA’s Accounting Officer and is responsible for the overall organisation, management and staffing of the HTA and for ensuring that there is a high standard of financial management in the HTA.
The Chief Executive is accountable to the HTA Board for the work of the Executive and the Board is accountable to the Department of Health and to Parliament for the activities and performance of the HTA.
After the end of each financial year, the HTA shall submit an Annual Report and Accounts to the Secretary of State, National Assembly for Wales and the relevant Northern Ireland Department.
The HTA has an Audit Committee that is an advisory body to the Human Tissue Authority board (the Authority). The main functions of the Audit Committee are:
• to help promote the highest standards of propriety in the use of HTA funds and encourage proper accountability for the use of those funds
• to improve the quality of financial reporting by reviewing internal and external financial statements on behalf of the Authority
• to promote a climate of financial discipline and control which will help to reduce the opportunity for financial mismanagement
• to review the management of risk in the HTA and
• to promote the development of internal controls systems which will help satisfy the Authority that the HTA will achieve its objectives and targets and is operating:
(i) in accordance with any statutory requirements for the use of public funds
(ii) within delegated authorities laid down by the sponsor department and the HTA's own rules on what matters should be referred to the Authority
(iii) in a manner which will make most economic and effective use of resources available
Download the Audit Committee Terms of Reference
The Audit Committee is comprised of 4 non-executive members of the Authority. Members of the executive team, representatives from the National Audit Office (NAO) and the HTA’s Internal Auditor also attend the Audit Committee. The Audit Committee meets three times per year.
The Human Tissue Authority has established a Remuneration Committee.
The duties of the Remuneration Committee are:
- scheduling meetings to consider salaries, performance-related pay, pension, contracts and performance management of members of SMT
- ensuring that an appropriate performance management system (which includes training and development requirements) is in place and applied to the performance of SMT and other staff
- reporting to the Authority on the outcome of the performance management of the SMT against agreed objectives and targets
- the approval of recommendations on pay policy for staff outside SMT
- ensuring that an accurate statement of the policy on remuneration for all staff and Authority members is included in the annual report and accounts and that this document reflects payments of all kinds made to SMT
- the approval of recommendations for severance payments and early retirement for all staff