The Chief Medical Officer (CMO) is the most senior advisor on health matters in a government. There are four CMOs in the United Kingdom who are appointed to advise their respective governments: Her Majesty’s Government, the Northern Ireland Executive, the Scottish Government and the Welsh Government. Each CMO is assisted by one or more Deputy Chief Medical Officers.
In England, the CMO is a member of the board of the National Health Service (NHS), a civil servant in the Department of Health, and head of the medical civil service. The Chief Medical Officer is a qualified medical doctor whose medical speciality traditionally was public health medicine, and whose work focused on the health of communities rather than health of individuals.