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Health: Infectious Disease Consultants

Volume 713: debated on Wednesday 21 October 2009

Question

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will review the availability of infectious disease consultants in the United Kingdom's universities and hospitals, in the light of the absence of such specialist consultants in several United Kingdom medical schools and teaching hospitals. [HL5601]

There were 318 consultants in the infectious diseases medical speciality at the last NHS workforce census, carried out in September 2008.

Infectious disease (ID) consultants tend to be found only in major teaching/regional centres.

The work carried out by ID specialists has a large degree of crossover with the medical microbiology and medical virology specialities.

What is most important is getting the right people with the right skills to deliver services appropriate to the local population needs and that strategic health authorities together with local National Health Service organisations and deaneries should work together to plan and train a medical workforce, which matches the needs of the population they serve.