Microbiology

Microbiology deals with diseases caused by infectious agents such as bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Microbiologists have roles both in the laboratory and directly in patient care. It offers involvement in a spectrum of activities ranging across:

  • basic laboratory science
  • direct patient care
  • public health
  • infection control
  • research and teaching
  • business management

The last two decades have seen enormous change in Medical Microbiology. ‘New’ organisms (Helicobacter pylori, HIV, Hepatitis C virus) have been discovered and characterised. ‘New’ infectious diseases (AIDS, Lyme disease, and Legionnaires’ disease) have been described. ‘Old’ infections (tuberculosis, malaria, and pertussis)have re-emerged as major threats and have become increasingly resistant to previously effective antibiotics (MRSA, Streptococcus pneumoniae, VRE).

Over this time, advances in technology and molecular medicine (automation, polymerase chain reaction) have added greatly to the Microbiologist’s diagnostic armamentarium. At the same time however, Microbiology remains very much a ‘hands-on’ discipline. In many ways it is an art as much as a science, and one in which an individual pathologist’s experience, judgment and interpretive skills are pivotal.

Clinical aspects involve control of outbreaks of infectious disease and dealing with the problems of infections caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Bacterial Serotyping

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL supplied for Serotyping of Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus species, Neisseria meningitidis.

Frequency / Number of samples

4 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Serotyping of Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus species, Neisseria meningitidis

Bacteriology Extensive

Lyophilised sample – 1 or 5 mL supplied to participate in the full range of modules listed below:

U – Urine: includes microscopy, bacterial count, pathogen ID and antibiotic susceptibilities.
S – Skin/Throat/Nose Pathogens: includes simulated clinical specimens for pathogen isolation, bacterial identification, Gram Stain and antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
F – Faecal Pathogens: includes culture of simulated clinical specimens for the isolation of pathogens and bacterial identification.
R – Respiratory Pathogens: includes culture of simulated clinical specimens for the isolation of pathogens, bacterial identification and antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
G – Genital Swabs / Anaerobes: includes culture of simulated clinical specimens for the isolation of pathogens and bacterial identification.
M – Mycobacteriology: includes prepared slides for acid-fast staining and simulated sputa for AFB culture.
D – Difficult/Blood Culture Isolates: isolates for identification.

Frequency / Number of samples

7-8 samples per survey / 8 surveys
Difficult/Blood Culture/Sterile sites: 1 sample per survey / 8 surveys

Tests

Urine, Skin/Ear/Eye/Throat/Nose, Faecal, Respiratory, Genital Swabs/Anaerobes, Mycobacteriology, Difficult/Blood Culture Isolates

Bacteriology Limited

Lyophilised sample – 1 or 5 mL supplied to participate in up to 4 of the modules listed below:

U – Urine: includes microscopy, bacterial count, pathogen ID and antibiotic susceptibilities.
S – Skin/Throat/Nose Pathogens: includes simulated clinical specimens for pathogen isolation, bacterial identification, Gram Stain and antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
F – Faecal Pathogens: includes culture of simulated clinical specimens for the isolation of pathogens and bacterial identification.
R – Respiratory Pathogens: includes culture of simulated clinical specimens for the isolation of pathogens, bacterial identification and antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
G – Genital Swabs / Anaerobes: includes culture of simulated clinical specimens for the isolation of pathogens and bacterial identification.
M – Mycobacteriology: includes prepared slides for acid-fast staining and simulated sputa for AFB culture.
D – Difficult/Blood Culture Isolates: isolates for identification.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 samples per survey / 4 surveys
Difficult/Blood Culture/Sterile sites: 1 sample per survey / 8 surveys

Tests

Urine, Skin/Ear/Eye/Throat/Nose, Faecal, Respiratory, Genital Swabs/Anaerobes, Mycobacteriology, Difficult/Blood Culture Isolates

Clostridium difficile Laboratory Diagnosis

Lyophilised sample – 2 mL for the Detection of Clostridium difficile – culture, antigen and toxin.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 4 samples per survey

Tests

Detection of Clostridium difficile antigen and toxin by phenotypic and molecular methods

Microbiological Surveillance Culture for endoscopes and bronchoscopes

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL supplied – Microbiological Surveillance culture for endoscopes and bronchoscopes.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Microbiological Surveillance Culture for endoscopes and bronchoscopes

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Bordetella pertussis

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL supplied to assess the detection of Bordetella pertussis.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Bordetella pertussis

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Chlamydia trachomatis & Neisseria gonorrhoeae

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL or 5 mL to assess the detection of Chlamydia trachomatis & Neisseria gonorrhoeae.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Cytomegalovirus

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL to assess the detection of CMV.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Cytomegalovirus

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Enterovirus

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL to assess the detection of Enterovirus.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Enterovirus

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Gastrointestinal Pathogens (Bacteria)

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL to assess the detection of gastrointestinal bacterial pathogens.

Frequency / Number of samples

1 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Molecular detection of bacterial pathogens./p>

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Gastrointestinal Pathogens (Parasites)

Liquid sample – 1 mL to assess the detection of gastrointestinal pathogens (parasites).

Frequency / Number of samples

1 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Molecular detection of gastrointestinal parasites./p>

Molecular Infectious Diseases – Herpes simplex virus 1 & 2

Lyophilised sample – 1 mL to assess the detection of Herpes simplex virus type 1 and 2.

Frequency / Number of samples

2 surveys / 6 samples per survey

Tests

Herpes simplex virus 1 and 2