Organizations related to the health sector


The French mutual insurance company

The health insurance are multiple and each has its own peculiarities. For this reason they are grouped in the National Federation of French Mutuals (FNMF), which represents the millions of members of these mutual societies and the mutualist movement itself with the institutions.

control bodies

In the field of health, many organizations fall under the responsibility of the State, and more specifically of the Ministry of Health. This is the case, for example, with the National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM), which is responsible for assessing the health risks of medicines, and more generally for all health products.

The High Authority of Health (HAS) is another pillar of the French health system, as it evaluates products, actions, services and health technologies with a view to their eligible for reimbursement† It is also responsible for defining, among other things, recommendations for good clinical practice and public health for professionals and patients. Finally, the HAS certifies healthcare facilities and has the authority to accredit practitioners in certain medical disciplines.

Information and prevention

The many health prevention campaigns come from the National Institute of Health Prevention and Education (INPES), especially regarding the dangers of alcohol, contraception, drugs, tobacco or even the sexually transmitted diseases†

The National Academy of Medicine, which is primarily responsible for advising the government on public health matters, may also, without prior request, issue opinions or press releases that may be intended for wide dissemination.

Another body responsible for advising the state is the National Council of the Order of Physicians (CNOM). The Order guarantees the medical code of ethics, but also the maintenance of the competence and integrity of the medical profession. Similarly, the National Order of Pharmacists has the same public service mission for the pharmacist profession.

The only public research organization devoted entirely to human health, the National Institute for Health and Medical Research (Inserm), is responsible for the strategic, scientific and operational coordination of biomedical research.

consumer protection

Cost of medicines, quality of health services, food hazards… in terms of health, daily consumption can pose dangers and be a very opaque medium. That is why consumer associations have set themselves the task of supporting the French on a daily basis and helping them make the right choice.

The most famous consumer association is UFC-Que Choisir, which aims to establish balanced relationships between producers, distributors and consumers and to help the latter assert their rights. Among the fights of UFC-Que Choisir in the field of health: the scandal of old people’s homes (1994), sugar in food (2003) or “the big bazaar” around prices and advice in pharmacies (2012).

The association is also committed to the monthly edition of a special magazine “Que Choisir Santé”, which aims to answer everyone’s questions and concerns in the field of health and open a better dialogue with the medical profession.

Another notable consumer protection body, this time under the control of the Ministry of Economic Affairs: the Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention (DGCCRF), responsible for the competition regulation of markets, economic protection and consumer safety.


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