Leading edge pathology conducted by a dedicated team of highly trained, skilled and specialised scientists


Our Microbiology Team provide timely and high quality routine and specialist diagnostic and advisory services to patients to NHS Trusts, Private Laboratories, Primary Care and Community Services locally and further afield.  We offer a wide range of clinical and scientific expertise through our on-site Consultant Microbiologists and Scientific Staff.  We provide a 24 hour service for both urgent specimen processing and clinical advice.

Investigations include:

  • Isolation and/or detection of micro-organisms
  • Determination of antimicrobial sensitivity and identification of pathogenic bacteria
  • Monitoring of treatment efficacy by antimicrobial assay and viral load quantification
  • Microbiological environmental monitoring for various sites within STH and other institutions
  • Close links with the Public Health Department and Environmental Health Officers to share epidemiological information

The department has  gained over many years a local, national and international reputation for scientific development and excellence. Our Consultants, Clinical Scientists and Scientific Staff represent their professions both locally and nationally as committee members, invited lecturers and as scientific meeting organisers.   We participate in all relevant aspects of the UK National External Quality Assurance Schemes and performance is of a very high standard. The department currently holds both ISO:15189 and ISO:17025 Accreditation.

All aspects of infection control are dealt with by the department, including the monitoring of various micro-organisms to pre-empt outbreaks (MRSA, other antimicrobial resistant organisms, Clostridium difficult and viruses such as Norovirus).  Departmental medical and scientific staff and infection control nurses form an integral part of the Trusts’ Infection Control service.  

The department, in association with the Histology unit, also provides medical, managerial and scientific support , testing and advice for the Trust’s Bone Bank Facility which is licensed by the Human Tissue Authority. Donated bone [femoral head] is stored and tested in line with HTA regulations for eventual use by Orthopaedic surgeons when performing hip replacements.

If you would like to know more about how we can help you, please contact us by telephone on 0114 226 7666 or email us at sth.labmed@nhs.net

Department Specific Tests

Assays for Chloramphenicol, Cycloserine, Itraconazole, Streptomycin, Amikacin, Fluconazole, Amphoteracin

Blood Cultures

Bordetella pertussis, Whooping Cough, Pernasal Swab

Bronchial Washings / Broncho Alveolar Lavage (BAL)

Carbapenemase Producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) Gram-Negative Resistance Screening

Catheter Tips (CVP, Intravenous, Long Line, Ventricular)

Clostridium difficile screen (C.diff)

Corneal Scrapes, Aqueous Taps

Cryptococcal Antgen

Cryptosporidium oocysts

CSF (Meningitis, Encephalitis, Subarachnoid haemorrhage)

Cystic Fibrosis Samples, Sputum, Cough Swab, NPA

Dental Specimens (Pus, swab of pus)

Faeces Culture (Stool)

GBS Screen, Group B Streptococcus, HSB, Introital Swab

Genital Swab Culture (HVS, Cervical, Vaginal, Urethral, Placental)

Giardia lamblia

Helicobacter pylori Faecal Antigen Test

Helicobacter pylori Gastric Biopsy

Legionella Investigations (Legionairres Disease, Atypical pneumonia)

Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)

Methicillin Sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA)

Mycobacteria ( AAFB, TB Tuberculosis )

Mycology, Fungal Culture of Skin, Hair and Nail (Dermatophytes)

Oral Rinse

Ova, Cysts and Parasites

PCR (various)


Schistosoma haematobium

Sputum Culture, Induced Sputum

Sterile Fluid Examination (Joint, Synovial, Drain, Ascitic, CAPD, Pleural)

Swabs (Wound, Ear, Nose, Eye and Throat)

Ticks, Fleas and Lice ( Ectoparasites )

Tissue and Biopsies for Culture

Urine Microscopy and Culture (MSU,CSU,SPA,CCU)

Vancomycin (Glycopeptide) Resistant Enterococci (VRE)