Implementing genomics to combat infectious disease

8 November 2016

The work

PHG Foundation initiated and led a national strategic review in which we critically evaluated the science of pathogen genomics, its current clinical and public health use and the potential for its wider use in health systems. The work informed development of our implementation plan for policy-makers - published as our major report Pathogens Genomics into Practice.

The motivation

Pathogen genomics has the potential to transform infectious disease services, but is still in an embryonic stage. We recognised national leadership was urgently needed to implement a cohesive and comprehensive strategy if health systems were to truly take advantage of these new technologies.

What we did

  • Evaluated in detail the science underlying pathogen genomics its clinical utility, practical utility, and the current state of its implementation within the NHS
  • Published our report Pathogen Genomics Into Practice, in which we detailed our findings and set out a plan of 35 recommendations to achieve the most effective implementation of pathogen genomics within existing health systems
  • Organised a series of events to broker knowledge between stakeholders in the field of pathogen genomics, and develop consensus. At the launch event we invited further experts to review our findings, and to build strategic partnerships to move towards full implementation of the technology
  • Provided three specifically tailored briefings for the principal organisations involved in infectious disease services in England

Pathogen Genomics Into Practice