Public Health Laboratory Service 1946 - 2003
The Public Health Laboratory Service was established as part of the National Health Service in 1946. An Emergency Public Health Laboratory Service was established in 1940 as a response to the threat of bacteriological warfare. There was originally a central laboratory at Colindale and a network of regional and local laboratories. By 1955 there were about 1000 staff. These laboratories were primarily preventative with an epidemiological focus. They were, however, in some places located with hospital laboratories which had a diagnostic focus.
It was replaced by the Health Protection Agency in 2003.