What do infectious diseases physicians do? A 2-week snapshot of inpatient consultative activities across Australia, New Zealand and Singapore

Paul Ingram, Allen Cheng, Ronan Murray, Christopher Blyth, Tony Walls, Dale Fisher, Josh Davis, Iain Abbott, Rupa Kanapathipillai, Victoria Madigan, Duncan McLellan, Simon Briggs, Claire King, James Hurley, Lyn-Li Lim, Karina Kennedy, Heather Wilson, Thomas Evans, Michael Maze, Alan PithieLauren Chong, Grace Leung, Sarah McCann, Lai-Yang Lee, Jill Wolfgang, Thomas Day, Gustinna De Silva, Marianne Martinello, Thomas Gliddon, Moira Wilson, Eugene Athan, James Pollard, Patrick Harris, Rajesh Pachchigar, Michael Wehrhahn, Paul Moriarty, David Holland, Andrew Langlands, Stephen McBride, Moayid Sherif, Kate Lim, Keat Choong, Andrew Henderson, David Sowden, Richard Everts, Manesh Manon, Archana Sud, Kerry Read, Rudyard Yap, Evan Bursle, Robert Gluer, David Siebert, Gail Cross, Joshua Francis, Cameron Booth, Simon Dalton, Eng Ooi, Desmond Chih, John Dyer, Julia Clarke, K Grimwood, Amanda Gwee, Robert Commons, Suman Majumdar, Sanchia Warren, David Manners, Edward Raby, Devi Radhakrishnan, Caitlin Keighley, Ravindra Dotel, David Paterson, Emma Best, Ar Aung, Tim Paterson, Marilyn Hassell, Jim Newcombe, Ryan Llorin, David Lye, Massimo Giola, Haur Yew, James Taylor, Jon Iredell, Simon Pollett, Lokesh Garg, Zoe Jennings, Amit Kapur, Spiros Miyakis, Dhananjay Parshuramkar, Kyaw Thu, Kavita Rasiah, Narin Bak, Sharon Chen, Louise Cooley, David Gordon, Benjamin Howden, Emma McBryde, David Murdoch, Anton Peleg, Anna Ralph, Owen Robinson, Monica Slavin, Tania Sorrell, Steven Tong, Ian Woolley

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    17 Citations (Scopus)


    The practice of an infectious diseases (ID) physician is evolving. A contemporary understanding of the frequency and variety of patients and syndromes seen by ID services has implications for training, service development and setting research priorities. We performed a 2-week prospective survey of formal ID physician activities related to direct inpatient care, encompassing 53 hospitals throughout Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, and documented 1722 inpatient interactions. Infections involving the skin and soft tissue, respiratory tract and bone/joints together accounted for 49% of all consultations. Suspected/confirmed pathogens were primarily bacterial (60%), rather than viral (6%), fungal (4%), mycobacterial (2%) or parasitic (1%). Staphylococcus aureus was implicated in 409 (24%) episodes, approximately four times more frequently than the next most common pathogen. The frequency of healthcare-related infections (35%), immunosuppression (21%), diabetes mellitus (19%), prosthesis-related infections (13%), multiresistant pathogens (13%) and non-infectious diagnoses (9%) was high, although consultation characteristics varied between geographical settings and hospital types. Our study highlights the diversity of inpatient-related ID activities and should direct future teaching and research. ID physicians' ability to offer beneficial consultative advice requires broad understanding of, and ability to interact with, a wide range of referring specialities.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)O737-O744
    Number of pages8
    Issue number10
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2014


    • Australia
    • Consultations
    • Infectious diseases
    • New Zealand
    • Singapore


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