Health Service Categories and Careers


Infectious Diseases studies microbiology and infectious diseases – both old and new - and their pathology, including their impact in the immunocompromised host and on society at large. It involves both clinical practice and laboratory medicine, and looks at the diagnosis, management, treatment and prevention of infection and infectious diseases - in the individual patient and from a public health perspective. It develops clinical expertise to deal with differential diagnosis of illness with infective versus non-infective causes. Research, education, and health advocacy are significant components of this area of medicine, as is the development and implementation of national, state and hospital-wide policies relating to infection control, immunisation, antibiotic usage and conditions, such as HIV. Specialist Infectious Disease physicians can contribute to informed debate and raise awareness on issues such as: the economic impact of infections and control measures, emerging infectious diseases, antimicrobial use and resistance, and the impact of the pharmaceutical industry on clinical practice, the research agenda, and the direction of health advocacy.

Infectious Diseases Jobs

Infectious Diseases Physicians diagnose, manage, treat, and prevent infections and infectious diseases. They have expert knowledge on microbes, such as bacteria, funguses, viruses, and parasites that infect humans. They also have specialised knowledge of antibiotic resistance, vaccines, immunology, and antimicrobial entities and treatments. Infectious diseases physicians manage acute problems, such as STIs, and provide long-term care of immunocompromised patients and those suffering chronic diseases, such as Hepatitis and HIV. They manage patients presenting with infections in a number of settings, including perioperative and intensive care units in hospitals. They also consult with other subspecialists and generalists, as well as primary care providers and ambulance services. Infectious Disease Specialist Physicians work within multidisciplinary teams, and are often involved in research, training, education and advocacy across health care, public health, and community health settings. To qualify in this area of medicine, doctors undertake Advanced Training in Infectious Diseases, a 3-year RACP program open to doctors who have completed RACP basic training in Internal Medicine. There is also 5-year joint training program, through the RACP and Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia (RCPA), which combines two (2) years advanced infectious diseases training and three (3) years laboratory training in microbiology. Both these pathways lead to Fellowship and Specialist registration with AHPRA.