Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE)

COMARE advises on the health effects of natural and man-made radiation, both ionising and non-ionising.

Role of the group

COMARE is a Department of Health and Social Care expert committee, but it provides independent advice to all government departments and agencies.

At its meetings, the committee has representatives from:

  • Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

  • Department of Health and Social Care

  • Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (Northern Ireland)

  • Environment Agency

  • Food Standards Agency

  • Food Standards Scotland

  • Health and Safety Executive

  • Information Services Division, NHS National Services Scotland

  • Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

  • Nuclear Decommissioning Authority

  • Office for Nuclear Regulation

  • Public Health England

  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency

  • Scottish Government

  • Welsh Government

Terms of reference

To assess and advise government and the devolved administrations on the health effects of natural and man-made radiation and to assess the adequacy of the available data and the need for further research.

Work Programme: 2021-2022 (PDF, 31.6KB, 2 pages)


Annual Report: 2020 (PDF, 63.1KB, 4 pages)

COMARE Reports

COMARE Statement (PDF, 99.3KB, 1 page) on the ‘Analysis of cancers associated with radiation in the area around Dalgety Bay, 2008-2017 - An update for the Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE)’ - Information Services Division, NHS National Services Scotland

COMARE - files for early reports, statements and other documents

Past documents, including statements and history of the committee, are also held on the committee pages on the National Archives website.



12th November 2020: Minutes 127th meeting (PDF, 62.2KB, 7 pages)

9th July 2020: Minutes 126th meeting (PDF, 49.6KB, 7 pages)

10th March 2020: Minutes 125th meeting (PDF, 48.1KB, 7 pages)

20th November 2019: Minutes 124th meeting (PDF, 91.7KB, 8 pages)

COMARE meeting minutes and agendas

Abbreviations list for COMARE meeting minutes (PDF, 76.3KB, 3 pages)

Future meetings - 2021

129th meeting - 8th July 2021

129th meeting - draft agenda (PDF, 20.6KB, 1 page)

Due to the ongoing COVID pandemic, the 129th meeting will be held online. Applications will not be considered for observers for this meeting.

130th meeting - 18th November 2021

Open meetings

COMARE holds open meetings to increase the visibility and transparency of its work. To attend a meeting as an observer, you will need to send an open meetings application form to the secretariat and follow the code of conduct for observers.

Procedure for open meetings (updated September 2019) (PDF, 67.4KB, 3 pages)

Open meetings application form (updated September 2019) (PDF, 63.1KB, 3 pages)


COMARE chooses members for their medical and scientific expertise and has never had members from the nuclear or electrical power supply industries. Current members are:

  • Dr Chris Gibson (Chair)

  • Dr Jane Barrett

  • Professor Frank de Vocht (University of Bristol)

  • Professor John Harrison (Oxford Brookes University)

  • Dr Mark Hill (University of Oxford)

  • Dr Ray Kemp (Lay member)

  • Dr Colin Martin (University of Glasgow)

  • Professor Stewart Martin (University of Nottingham)

  • Dr Richard McNally (Newcastle University)

  • Professor Paul Pharoah (University of Cambridge)

  • Professor Graham Smith

  • Professor James Smith (University of Portsmouth)

  • Professor Malcolm Sperrin (Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust)

  • Professor David Sutton (NHS Tayside)

  • Professor Roger Taylor (Swansea University)

  • Professor Mireille Toledano (Imperial College, London)

  • Dr Chris Westcott (Lay member)

Subcommittee, working group and secretariat membership (PDF, 26.8KB, 1 page)

Declaration of members' interests (PDF, 29.3KB, 1 page)

COMARE vacancies

DHSC are currently advertising for a Chair and five expert members for COMARE.

The expert member vacancies are for:

  • a diagnostic radiologist

  • a radiation protection expert, ideally with an interest in controls or international work

  • a public health physician, ideally with an interest in environmental effects

  • a photobiologist or dermatologist, ideally with an interest in radiation skin effects

  • a clinical oncologist

The closing date for applications is midday on Wednesday 23 June 2021.

Further details are available from Working for DHSC

Code of practice

COMARE adheres to the guidelines laid down in the code of practice for scientific advisory committees (Government Office for Science, 2011) as is appropriate and in agreement with the Department of Health and Social Care.

COMARE Code of Conduct (PDF, 50.5KB, 2 pages)



COMARE Secretariat
c/o Public Health England
Centre for Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards
Oxon OX11 0RQ