Who we are

Our objectives are to:

  • advance knowledge
  • foster scientific interest
  • and disseminate information

about the prevention and control of healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs).

We have over 1,000 members who are experts in the prevention and control of HCAIs.  Our members are drawn largely from the medical profession, and are predominantly consultant microbiologists and doctors enrolled on an infection specialty training programme.  Nurses, clinical scientists, research scientists and others with a demonstrable professional interest in HCAIs are also a vital part of our membership network.

Healthcare-associated infections - how we help

Patients can acquire HCAIs either as a result of being in contact with a healthcare setting or via medical interventions. Infection prevention and control is a key focus for those working in patient-facing healthcare.

Individuals who are committed to reducing levels of HCAIs to the lowest possible levels form the membership that HIS represents and supports.

What we do

  • We help to prevent HCAIs by sharing research, evidence and best practice
  • We provide a source of expertise in the prevention and control of HCAI
  • We support everyone in UK healthcare and around the world to reduce avoidable HCAIs
  • We strive to inspire and support generations of healthcare infection professionals through training, education and collaboration
  • We support and communicate pioneering world leading research, driving effective practice

We consult our membership regularly, and every 5 years we formally review our strategy to ensure we understand the current climate within the field of HCAIs, the needs of our members as well as the larger infection, prevention and control community. We then set strategic objectives, and develop plans to ensure we achieve them.

Currently, we achieve our strategic objectives which focus on the prevention and control of HCAIs by sharing research, evidence and best practice. We do this via a programme of training and events, the development of resources, the production of evidence-based publications and guidance, the allocation of research funding, and other activities that support and represent our members.

The Healthcare Infection Society (HIS) is a charity (1158172) registered in England and Wales.

Join our network of experts and help to reduce HCAIs
Our statement of purpose

Our vision

A world in which HCAIs have been reduced to the lowest possible level

Our mission

To provide healthcare professionals with the information, evidence and skills they need to prevent and control HCAIs

Our values

We believe that:

  • Good science underpins good clinical practice
  • Many HCAIs are preventable through effective multi-disciplinary teamwork
  • Continual professional learning and development is necessary to reduce the incidence of HCAIs
  • Collaboration within and beyond the Society will help to advance and communicate knowledge
Our history

In 1979 a group of consultant medical microbiologists met to form a society that would foster the scientific interests of those hospital doctors who were interested in nosocomial (or hospital-acquired) infections. The first formal meeting of the Society took place in 1980, and the Society moved into permanent premises at 162 King’s Cross Road London in July 2002 and Professor Sir Liam Donaldson officially opened the headquarters in March 2003.

Since 1980 the Society has been governed by a board of trustees and officers whom, along with committee chairs and co-opted members, serve as the HIS Council. 

In 2020 HIS and the Journal of Hospital Infection will celebrate their 40th anniversaries.  

Past HIS Officers and Chairs

Presidents

  • 1980 – 1984 Professor E J Lowbury
  • 1984 – 1988 Professor M T Parker
  • 1988 – 1994 Professor G J Ayliffe
  • 1994 – 1998 Professor D Speller
  • 1998 – 2002 Dr S W B Newsom
  • 2002 – 2006 Professor A M Emmerson
  • 2006 – 2010 Dr G L Ridgway
  • 2010 – 2014 Professor T R F Rogers
  • 2014 – Present Professor G L French
  • 2014 - 2018 Professor Hilary Humpreys (President-elect)

 

Chairs

  • 1980 – 1984 Professor G J Ayliffe
  • 1984 – 1987 Dr D C Shanson
  • 1987 – 1990 Professor M W Casewell
  • 1990 – 1993 Professor A M Emmerson
  • 1993 – 1996 Dr R H George
  • 1996 – 1998 Professor T R F Rogers
  • 1999 – 2001 Professor G L French
  • 2001 – 2007 Dr R C Spencer
  • 2007 – 2011 Dr A P Fraise
  • 2011 – 2015 Dr T C Boswell
  • 2015 – Present Dr E Ridgway

Secretaries

  • 1980 – 1983  Dr D C Shanson
  • 1983 – 1986  Dr M C Kelsey
  • 1986 – 1989  Dr A J Howard
  • 1989 – 1992  Dr R C Spencer
  • 1992 – 1993  Dr D McGhie
  • 1993 – 1996  Dr F Falkiner
  • 1996 – 1999  Dr M Wilcox
  • 1999 – 2005  Dr M Greig
  • 2005 – 2006  Dr J Richards
  • 2006 – 2009  Dr A Eastaway
  • 2009 – 2015  Ms Carole Fry
  • 2015 – Present Dr P Jenks

Scientific Secretaries

  • 1980 – 1982  Dr M W Casewell
  • 1982 – 1984  Dr R H George
  • 1984 – 1987  Dr T R F Rogers
  • 1987 – 1990  Dr P J Wilkinson
  • 1990 – 1993  Dr S M Mehtar
  • 1993 – 1997  Dr G M Scott
  • 1997 – 2003  Dr J Richards
  • 2003 – 2005  Dr E T M Smyth
  • 2005 – 2011  Dr T Boswell
  • 2011 – Present  Professor P Wilson

Treasurers

  • 1980 – 1984  Dr P D Meers
  • 1984 – 1988  Dr S W B Newsom
  • 1988 – 1999  Dr M C Kelsey
  • 1999 – 2005  Dr A P Fraise
  • 2005 – 2008  Dr M Greig
  • 2008 – 2014  Dr W A Telfer Brunton
  • 2014 – 2017  Dr A Colville
  • 2017 – 2020  Dr Richard Cunningham

Editors of The Journal of Hospital Infection

  • 1980 – 1984  Professor G J Ayliffe
  • 1985 – 1988  Dr P J Sanderson
  • 1989 – 1993  Dr T R Rogers
  • 1993 – 1998  Professor G L French
  • 1998 – 2005  Dr S P Barrett
  • 2005 – 2010  Dr S Dancer
  • 2010 – 2015) Dr J Child
  • 2015 – Present  Dr J Gray 

Honorary Archivists

  • 1989 – 1992 Dr Philip Sanderson
  • 2018 – Present Dr R C Spencer
Our legal identity

Registered as a charitable incorporated organisation charity number: 1158172

VAT registration number: GB 432177565

Registered address: 162 King’s Cross Road, London, WC1X 9DH