UK’s Vaccine Taskforce to merge with health security agency and Life Science Office

The UK government has announced that core functions from its successful, but temporary, UK Vaccine Taskforce, will be taken on permanently by different parts of the government.

The task force was set up in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and was intended to secure effective vaccines for the UK as quickly as possible; improve the UK’s onshoring capacity in vaccine development, manufacture, and supply chain; and support efforts to distribute vaccines globally.

In October 2022, responsibility for securing effective vaccines will move to the UK’s Health Security Agency (UKHSA). Staff from the original Vaccine Taskforce will become part of a new directorate within UKHSA to ensure a smooth transition.  

Responsibility for the onshoring program will move to the UK’s Office of Life Sciences, which is jointly run by the Department of Health and Social Care and the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy.

Responsibility for the Vaccine Taskforce's international role remains unclear; it is rumored that this role will also be undertaken by UKHSA, which maintains an international perspective as part of its public health mandate.

Press release – UK government