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Antimicrobial resistance and healthcare associated infections

Antimicrobial Resistance and Healthcare Associated Infections Reference Unit (AMRHAI)

Public Health England Colindale
61 Colindale Avenue
London NW9 5EQ

Email: amrhai@phe.gov.uk
Tel: 020 8200 4400
Fax: 020 8200 7449

PHE Colindale
Bacteriology Reference Department
DX 6530002
Colindale NW

Antimicrobial Resistance and Healthcare Associated Infections Reference Unit was created on 1st July 2012 by the merger of two former reference laboratories, ARMRL and Laboratory of Healthcare Associated Infection (LHCAI).

Antimicrobial Resistance and Healthcare Associated Infections (AMRHAI) is CPA accredited.  It comprises three units, each providing specialist reference functions, give advice on microbiological aspects of outbreak investigations and monitor national trends of distribution of strains.

The laboratory has a wide remit including the provision of a comprehensive microbial typing service. It provides national reference facilities for staphylococci, enterococci and various gram-negative rods including Klebsiella spp, Enterobacter spp, Serratia spp, Pseudomonas spp, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Burkholderia spp (including cepacia and pseudomallei) and Acinetobacter spp.In addition we offer serodiagnostic testing for S. aureus, S. pyogenes, P. aeruginosa and B. pseudomallei (melioidosis). The Laboratory also provides an identification service for bacteria with no reference facility at Colindale.

We receive bacterial isolates and serological samples from Public Health, National Health and commercial laboratories throughout the United Kingdom and abroad. We perform surveys of the occurrence of most nosocomial pathogens and links with other typing networks or systems that enable us to monitor the national and international spread of these organisms.

We have a particular interest in exploring ways in which infection control and antimicrobial prescribing control strategies can limit the rise of antimicrobial resistance.  We devise surveillance strategies, liaise with or establish national and international networks and are involved in many aspects of policy design, audit and review cycles. 

The staff of AMRHAI advise and educate infection control teams (ICTs), health care workers and the Department of Health on the surveillance, guidelines and audit activity, prevention and control of infection, including the management of outbreaks and the appropriate use of antibiotics and disinfectants. AMRHAI also provides advice on managing outbreaks of infection with support on-site as necessary.  There are extensive links with international centres, especially in the European Union.

To ensure that we can process your request efficiently, please use an AMRHAI  request form.