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Imported Fever Service

Contact the Imported Fever Service after discussion with local microbiology, virology or infectious disease consultant:

0844 778 8990

  • A specialist service for medical professionals for the diagnosis of acute fevers due to travel-related infections, providing:
  • Round the clock telephone access to expert clinical and microbiological advice to support patient management, infection control and public health interventions, from referral to delivery and interpretation of final results. 
  • 24 hour on call diagnostic service for viral haemorrhagic fevers and certain key differential diagnoses.
  • Next working day diagnostic service for a range of other acute imported fevers. 
  • Access to these services is available through local infection consultants (consultant microbiologists, virologists and infectious disease physicians).

The Imported Fever Service is run by the HPA in partnership with specialist tropical disease units in the NHS in Liverpool and London. The service has close links to HPA Health Protection Services and aims to provide an opportunity for better surveillance, epidemiology and evidence-based management of rare and unusual diseases in the UK.

The advisory service is available free-of-charge as are on-call diagnostic tests for suspected viral haemorrhagic fevers.

Expert clinical and microbiological advice

On-call advice will be provided by Infectious Disease Physicians from

  • The Tropical and Infectious Diseases Unit in Liverpool and the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in London.
  • HPA Consultant Microbiologists, virologists and infectious disease physicians from Microbiology Services at Porton, Colindale and other sites around the UK.

Diagnostic tests

The Imported Fever Service offers two levels of diagnostic service provision:

  • an urgent on call service
  • a next working day service

The urgent on call diagnostic service offers 24 hour molecular testing for viral haemorrhagic fevers and certain key differential diagnoses at HPA Porton. A next working day diagnostic service is offered for a comprehensive range of other acute fevers, such as dengue, chikungunya and rickettsia. For each sample sent to the Imported Fever Service a panel of geographically relevant tests is typically run, with the aim of delivering a positive diagnosis rather than ruling out single infections. The current charge for running one geographical panel is £125 per sample.

Public engagement

The Imported Fever Service does not offer telephone advice to the public, nor does it offer guidance regarding pre-Travel health advice (vaccination, malaria prophylaxis etc). Persons wishing to access such advice should speak to NHS Direct or their General Practitioners.

Online information on travel related health issues can be obtained through the National Travel Health Network and Centre  (NaTHNaC). 

Test results

To maintain the highest standards of medical confidentiality test results are issued only to identifiable hospital clinicians or general practices. Patients should approach the medical practitioner in charge of their case for their results, NOT the laboratory.