There are many regulatory bodies throughout the UK, covering a variety of different industries, including health, education and finance. These are however, only a few of the many areas that the UK cover, with an extensive list of industries requiring regulation.
Industries are regulated for a variety of important reasons, first and foremost being to protect the welfare and safety of the public. There are a few industries out there that can have a harmful impact on the public’s health, their wellbeing or financial situation when not following proper practice.
In order to stop this from happening, it is important to regulate these industries effectively, ensuring that their practices are conducted correctly, and thereby eliminating the risk of serious harm befalling the public who use their services.
Which industries are most regulated in the UK?
There are a host of industries that are regulated throughout the UK, some of the main sectors being:
Each of these industries have different regulatory bodies, ensuring that the sector is fair and ethical in its practices, thereby eliminating the risk of improper conduct harming the public.
Financial service firms and financial markets throughout the country are regulated by several important regulatory bodies, the main regulator being the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA regulates the conduct of 58,000 financial service firms and markets and have recently been rolling out the Senior Managers and Certification Regime for qualifying financial firms (more information here).
The FCA regulate this to help maintain a fair and honest financial service and market sector, ensuring that borrowers of financial products are not at risk of damaging their financial situation, and that businesses operate in an ethical and sustainable way.
The Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) is another regulatory body that monitors and supervises a near 1,500 building societies, credit unions, banks, major investment firms and insurers. Their role, similar to the FCA, is to regulate these areas and ensure that they are following the proper codes of conduct set out for them
The health industry has an extensive list of regulatory bodies, all helping to ensure that different areas of the sector are practicing proper and safe codes of conduct, and reducing the risk of patients and others within the sector, from being put in harm’s way. This mainly covers traditional medicine and treatments like psychology and others (read more).
One of the main regulators within this sector is the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which is the independent regulator of both health and adult social care throughout England. The CQC help to ensure that both health and social care sectors provide their patients with “safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care” whilst also encouraging improvements to care services overall.
The NHS Improvement is another body that helps to regulate fair and high-quality practices throughout the UK’s health sector. NHS Improvement helps to oversee NHS trusts, foundation trusts and all providers that offer care funded by the NHS. In helps to ensure that patients are given consistently high-quality, compassionate, safe levels of care.
There are also many organisations that help to regulate the treatment of the country’s environment, one of which being the Environment Agency (EA). The EA regulate how different types of waste is stored, used and disposed of. The organisation also helps to manage flood risks, provide information on what areas of the country are at risk of flooding and how to properly manage a flood.
The Marine Management Organisation (or MMO) is another body that helps to regulate the environment. The MMO help to promote a “clean, healthy, productive and biologically diverse” ocean and sea. Their responsibilities include managing fishing fleets and ensuring they do not go over the maximum limit, ensuring compliance when fishing (e.g. fishing vessel licences), and implementing regulations to help with marine nature conservation.
Schools throughout the UK are also regulated by multiple organisations, one of the most well-known being The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted). Ofsted is a part of the UK government that inspects the quality for a variety of different educational facilities, including both state and independent schools. Ofsted not only inspect the quality of educational facilities, but also agencies for adoption, fostering and childcare.
The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) also helps to regulate the education sector, specifically the qualifications, assessments and examinations throughout the country. Ofqual help to regulate these areas as well as offering guidance to help educational facilities adhere to these regulations.