CLINICAL VIROLOGY NETWORK
28 June 2002
Sir Liam Donaldson
The Chief Medical Officer
The Department of Health
London SW1A 2NS
Dear Sir Liam
Getting Ahead Of The Curve: A strategy
for combating infectious diseases (including other aspects of
Please find attached the response of the UK
Clinical Virology Network.
The UK Clinical Virology Network was established
last year to co-ordinate the activities of the nation's virologists.
You have received information about this previously in a letter
from Professor K Cartwright and Dr M Zuckerman, and in the report
of a Joint Working Group of the Royal College of Pathologists/
Association of Medical Microbiologists chaired by Professor D
In summary, we have agreed to interact as a
series of specialist laboratories in a hub-and-spoke relationship
with geographically-linked District General Hospitals. Our aim
is to provide best practice to all parts of the UK by sharing
laboratory protocols and epidemiological information using a dedicated
website. Furthermore, we intend to use the network to ensure that
information on the current epidemiology of virus infections is
provided electronically to the Communicable Disease Surveillance
Centre. To date, a representative committee has been appointed,
a constitution agreed and the website, with educational, practical
and interactive elements, will be live by June 2002. A working
group has already begun to prioritise a wide range of activities
for the benefit of the network and the practice of clinical and
public health virology.
All of these broad aims are similar to those
set out in your document "Getting Ahead Of The Curve"
and so we are able to respond positively and enthusiastically
to your proposals. Once you and your colleagues have read our
response, members of the Network Working Group would like to meet
to discuss our plans and funding requirements with your staff.
To arrange a convenient date, I can be contacted on telephone:
(020) 7830 2997.
Paul D Griffiths
Professor of Virology and Chief Executive Officer,
UK Clinical Virology Network