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Microbiology (Medical/Clinical) in medicine is a subspecialty of pathology which studies microorganisms, such as parasites, fungi, bacteria, prions, and viruses, that can contribute to disease in humans. It also studies pathogenesis, epidemiology, prevention, and management of infection. The discipline involves a range of laboratory techniques which help to diagnose, treat and monitor infectious diseases. It includes the analysis, reporting and interpretation of results, which can be used to advise clinicians, compile data and inform public health policy, develop new treatments, or make unique recommendations for therapy – such as antibiotic treatment - that considers the patient’s individual condition and genes. Medical microbiology is practiced in hospital laboratories. Subspecialties include bacteriology, virology, mycology, parasitology, serology or molecular microbiology.

Microbiology (Medical/Clinical) Jobs

Microbiologists in medicine work in hospital pathology and medical laboratories. They undertake a variety of tests and investigations to support the diagnosis, treatment, management, and prevention of infectious disease and inform clinical practice. They supervise and manage medical laboratories, conduct diagnostic tests, analyse and interpret results, collect data, write reports, train junior staff, and contribute to on-going research in medical microbiology and health care. They can advise clinicians on individual responses to treatment, inform public health policy and support the development of evidence-based advances in microbiology and medicine. Some roles involve the development of new treatments and pharmaceuticals for infections and infectious disease or investigation of emerging disease outbreaks. Medical/Clinical Microbiologists work autonomously and as part of a team of medical, nursing, pathology and laboratory staff. To qualify in Medical Microbiology, registered doctors can undertake the 5-year RCPA training program in microbiology, as a subspecialty of pathology. Alternatively, doctors can complete advanced training in Internal Medicine with RACP and undertake the joint RACP/RCPA training program in Infectious Diseases and Microbiology. Both programs lead to Fellowship and Specialist registration with AHPRA.