Mater Specialist Quick Find

Infectious Diseases – public patients

Purpose

This page contains information for general practitioners on how to refer patients aged 16 years and over to Infectious Diseases services at Mater Hospital Brisbane

Service Availability: 

How to Refer: 

If referral for care is indicated please list all of the General Referral Information and reason for request, and essential information as indicated below.

To refer, please fill in the Mater Adult Referral Form, available to download and embed into most major Practice Management software applications.

Referrals can be sent by:

Secure messaging  Medical Objects:   HM4101000R8
  HealthLink EDI:    materref   
Fax    07 3163 8548

 

 

 

 

Emergency

If any of the following are present or suspected, phone 000 to arrange immediate transfer to the emergency department or seek emergency medical advice if in a remote region:

 

View list of conditions:

Suspected / Confirmed Encephalitis with presence of:

  • Headache
  • Confusion
  • Seizures
  • Altered movement or sensation
  • Diplopia
  • Dysarthria / dysphagia
  • Petechial Rash 

If requesting advice about body fluid exposure with the last 72 hours requiring post exposure prophlaxsis (PEP) 

Pyrexia of unknown origin with presence of:

  • Altered conscious level
  • Suspicion of meningitis
  • Suspicion of endocarditis
  • Features of sepsis (hypotension, tachycardia, tachypnoea) 

Proven or suspected travel related and tropical infections with presence of:

  • Altered conscious leevel
  • Breathing diffuculty 
  • Abnormal bruising or bleeding
  • Petechial rash
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Paralysis
  • Jaundice
  • Positive tick / thin smears for malaria parasites
  • Blood culture positive for salmonella 

Proven or suspected Zoonotic Disease with the following features:

  • High fever
  • Altered level of consciousness 

A pregnant women with the following features:

  • Temperatures greater than 38 degrees celcius
  • Associated symptoms such as rigors, sweating, dysuria, rash, diarhhoea, vomiting
  • Exposure history e.g foreign travel, contact with animals, unwell people with rashes

A refugee, migrant or asylum seeker with the following features:

  • Altered level of consciousness 
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Anbormal bruising or bleeding
  • Petechial rash 
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Paralysis
  • Jaundice
  • Positive thick / thin smears for malaria parasites 
  • Blood cultures positive for salmonella 

Suspected or proven eye infections of acute onset or with visual compromise 

 

 

Scope of Service

Conditions out of scope

The following conditions are not routinely provided at Mater Hospital Brisbane:

View list of conditions:

Diagnosis or review of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

 

Conditions in scope

Bone and Prosthetic Infection

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • Presence of
    • Evidence of septicaemia or bacteraemia 
    • Septic Arthritis
    • Cellulitis
    • Bone infection with assosciated valvular heart disease or new heart murmur
    • Suspected myobacterial, gonococcal infection
  • Documented surgical plan of management - e.g. dates of washout, single or two-stage joint replacement
  • History of recent surgery (joint replacement or trauma). Include hospital discharge letter if available 
  • Location of suspected infection
  • Duration and location of symptoms (fever, pain, swelling, inflammation) 
  • Treatments trialled to date

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • Microscopy and culture of any discharge or aspirate collected 
  • Blood culture results
  • Myobacterial culture of any specimens 
  • Isotope bone scan or Indium-111 labelled while cell scan results
  • MRI results if available (may not be possible if ferrous metal prosthesis) 

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

Recent hospital admission for joint infection or bone / joint surgical procedure related to infection

Current antibiotic use for the treatment of joint / bone / prostethic joint infection

Suspected myobacterial / gonococcal infection

Joint / bone / prostethic joint infection for which antibiotic treatment has been completed 

No category 3 criteria

 

HIV

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • CD4 count (cells/mm3)
  • HIV viral load (highly desirable if available) 
  • History of condition including date diagnosed. Include last 3 specialist letters if patient has been seen previously by another specialist
  • Investigations
    • FBC, ELFTs, lymphocyte subsets
    • HIV viral load
    • HIV 1 and 2 serology 
    • HIV genotype resistance assay (GRA) if viral load detectable
    • Chest xray
    • CMV, EBV, Varicella, Toxoplasma
    • Hepatitis A, B and C serology
    • Urine chlamydia and gonorrhoea PCR
    • Serum beta-HCG (for women) 

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • Previous HIV genotype resistance assay (GRA)
  • Tuberculosis exposure history and previous treatment history if applicable

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • If requesting advice about body fluid exposure within the last 72 hours requiring post exposure prophylaxsis (PEP) please refer to emergency department 
  • If referring a patient with a new diagnosis of HIV on antenatal screening mark referral as URGENT and contact ID physician on call to facilitate urgent appointment 
  • If referring a patient with a new diagnosis of HIV or known HIV patient not on antiretroviral treatment mark referral as URGENT and contact Infectious Diseases physican on-call for consideration of hospital admission for further management

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

New diagnosis of HIV in pregnancy 

New diagnosis of HIV

Known diagnosis of HIV not currently on anti-retroviral treatment

Known HIV on anti retroviral treatment with supressed viral load 

No category 3 criteria

 

Infections in Pregnancy

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General referral information
  • Gestation of pregnancy, LNMP and estimated date of delivery (EDD)
  • Concerning symptoms
  • Investigations
    • Antenatal screening results e.g HIV, rubella, syphilis, varicella
    • FBC, ELFTs 
    • Antenatal imaging 

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • No additional information

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

 

All fevers or suspected infections in pregnant patients

No category 2 criteria

No category 3 criteria

 

Infections in Refugees, Migrants and Asylum Seekers

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General referral information
  • Language and interpreter requirement
  • History of signs and symptoms
    • nature, onset, duration
    • Fever or rashes
    • Weight loss, loss of appetite
  • Travel history
    • estimated date of arrival in Australia
    • Countries travelled to en-route to Australi 
  • Vaccination History 
  • Exposure history e.g. TB exposures, unwell contacts
  • Investigations
    • FBC, ELFTs 
    • Malarial thich and thin film
    • Mid-stream urine 
    • Viral serology as determined by history 
    • HIV serology
    • Stool microscopy, culture and sensitivities (MCS) and PCR
    • Hepatitis A, B, C serology 
    • Schistosoma and strongyloides serology 
    • Chest x-ray

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • No additional information

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

 

All fevers or suspected infections in asylum seekers, refugees and immigants

No category 2 criteria

No category 3 criteria

 

Infections of the Eye (Specialist to Specialist referral)

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General referral information
  • Timeline of symptoms
    • Duration and evoloution of symptoms
    • Fever history 
    • Occular symptoms e.g. redness, pain, purulent discharge, visual compromise
    • Associated syptoms e.g. rigors, sweating, dysuria, rash, diarrhoea, vomiting
  • Exposure history (foreign travel, contact with animals, unwell contacts 
  • Drug history including non-prescription and recreational 
  • Ophthalmological Signs
    • description of ophthalmological findings 
    • description of ophthalmological differential diagnosese based on above
    • Treatments initiated 
    • Results of investigations performed 

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • No additional information

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • ALL patients with suspected eye infections need to be seen by an Ophthalmologist or the Mater Ophthalmology Department prior to referral to the Infectious Diseases team

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

 

All suspected eye infections 

No category 2 criteria

No category 3 criteria

 

Mycobacterial Infections

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • Presence of:
    • Active tuberculosis (TB) bacilli in sputum (public health risk) 
    • Significant shortness of breath
    • Abnormal chest x-ray with new changes
    • Pleural effusion
    • Cavitation on chest x-ray
    • Immunosupression (drug related or due to another disease e.g. HIV) 
    • Spreading ulcer
  • Timeline and duration of symptoms
  • Presence of immunosupression and cause
  • Investigations
  • Chest x-ray
  • CT chest if abnormal chest x-ray
  • Sputum microscopy and culture, including myobacterial culture and Ziehl-Neelsen (ZN) staining
  • FBC, ELFTs, ESR, CRP
  • HIV serology

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • If previously seen by another specialist 2-3 most recent letters
  • Previous treatment history if available 

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • If sputum AFB positive and HIV positive please mark referral as URGENT and contact Infectious Diseases physican on-call to arrange for admission and initiation of management 
  • If sputum AFB positive please mark referral as URGENT

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

Sputum AFB positive and HIV positive

Sputum AFB positive 

Suspected Tuberculosis

 

 

 

 

 

Patient on anti-tuberculosis therapy initiated at another centre, requiring ongoing follow up 

History of previous treated tuberculosis, currently asymptomatic requiring ongoing follow up 

No category 3 criteria

 

Parasitic Infections

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • Signs and symptoms
  • Duration of infection and symptoms
  • Travel history 
  • Blood tests including eosinophilia
  • Mircroscopy or PCR evidence of infection
  • In case of extensive scabies, microscopy, culture and sensitivities (MCS) of secondary infection site

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • Liver Ultrasound if hepatic cysts present

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

Eosinophilia

Suspected parasite infection

No Category 2 criteria

No Category 3 criteria

 

Pyrexia of Unknown Origin

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • Timeline of symptoms
  • Maximum recorded temperature and frequency of temperatures above 30 degrees celcius
  • Associated symptoms (riros, sweating, dysuria, rash, diarrhoea, vomiting) 
  • Associated weight loss
  • Relevant examination findings e.g. lymphadenopathy, rash, heart murmur
  • Investigations
    • FBC, ELFTs, CRP, ESR
    • Sputum culture
    • MSU microscopy, culture and sensitivities (MCS) 
    • HIV serology
    • Chest x-ray
    • Blood cultures (at least 2 sets taken from separate sites) 

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • Auto antibody screen 
  • Relevant serology e.g. Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), toxoplasmosis, cytomegalovirus (CMV), pertussis, Hepatitis B and C
  • Skinn biopsy results of any rash
  • Echocardiogram if heart murmur present

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

Pyrexia of Unknown Origin of any duration

No category 2 criteria 

No category 3 criteria

 

Skin Infections - chronic and recurrent

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • Presence of
    • Spreading cellulitis
    • Large abscess of carbuncle
    • Extensive superficial infection
    • Vascular insufficiency, dependent oedema, lymphoedema
  • Timeline of symptoms including duration and site of infection
  • Treatments trialled to date, duration of treatment and reasons for failure 
  • FBC, ELFTs
  • Microscopy, culture and sensitivities (MCS) of infected area 

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • Skin scraping 
  • Fungal culture results
  • Skin biopsy results

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

Current acute skin infection 

Skin infections in the setting of immunosupression

No current evidence of infection but history of recurrent skin infections

No category 3 criteria

 

Syphilis

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General Referral Information
  • Presence of
    • Confusion
    • Neurological impairment
    • Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction after initiating treatment
  • Timeline of symptoms 
  • Previous treatment history 
  • Relevant features e.g. primary lesion, features suggesting secondary stage
  • FBC, ELFTs
  • Syphilis serology 
  • HIV serology
  • beta-HCG (for females)

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • ECG if late latent syphilis suspected 
  • CT brain if late latent syphilis suspected 
  • Urine chlamydia and gonorrhoea PCR

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • If syphilis serology positive in the setting of pregnancy please mark referral as URGENT and contact the Infectious Diseases physican on-call to facilitate urgent review 

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

Positive syphilis serology

No category 2 criteria

No category 3 criteria

 

 

Travel Related and Tropical Infections

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General referral information
  • History of signs and symptoms
    • nature, onset, duration
    • Fever
    • Weight loss, loss of appetite 
  • Examination
    • Lymphadenopathy
    • Rash
  • Travel History
    • Departure and return dates 
    • Destinations
  • Vaccination History 
  • Prophylactic medicaitons taken and compliance 
  • Investigations
    • FBC, ELFT
    • Malarial thick and thin film
    • Stool microscopy, culture and sensitivities (MCS) and PCR
    • Mid-stream urine MCS
    • Blood cultures

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • No additional information

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

 

All fevers or suspected infections in returned travellers 

No category 2 criteria

No category 3 criteria

 

Zoonotic Diseases

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

  • General referral information
  • Timeline of symptoms including key symptoms and any relevant rash descriptions
  • Exposure risk factors (occupational exposure, pets, animal husbandry, foreign travel, sewerage worker, feral pig hunting) 
  • Treatments trialled 
  • Suspected diagnosis
  • Relvant immunisation history e.g. Q Fever

Additional referral information (useful for processing the referral)

  • No additional information

Other useful information for management (not an exhaustive list)

  • No additional information

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

 

All suspected zoonotic infections

 

No category 2 criteria

No category 3 criteria

 

Other Infectious Diseases Condition

Essential information (Referral will be declined without this)

Categorisation

Available appointments are provided to our patients based on clinical priority. A process of categorisation ensures safety and equity of access.

Category 1 – urgent

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 30 days

Category 2 - Priority

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 90 days

Category 3 - Routine

Clinically recommended timeframe for initial appointment is 365 days

 

 

Our Specialists

Dr Paul Griffin

Director of Infectious Diseases

Dr Sumudu Britton

Infectious Diseases Physician

Dr Joseph McCormack

Infectious Diseases Physican

Dr James Morton 

Infectious Diseases Physician

Dr Jared Eisemann

Infectious Diseases Physician

 

Bulk Billed Clinics 

Mater Health offers patients the opportunity to attend bulk billed clinics. To provide your patient with the opportunity to attend a bulk billed clinic, please provide a named referral to one of the specialists listed above.

Contact Us 

If you would like to discuss a referral, including clinical criteria, or update the status of a current patient please contact our priority GP phone line on 07 3163 2200 

Current Waiting Time for Appointments 

We provide up to date data on how long patients are waiting for their first appointment by specialty here.

Referral Guideline Development:

These Mater Referral Guidelines have been developed locally by GPs and specialists to support safe and quality referral to publicly funded specialist outpatient services.

 

Content last reviewed: 1 June 2018

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