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Infection Prevention and Disease Control

Our mission is to improve health outcomes and health service delivery with respect to infectious diseases, infection prevention and disease control, and associated disciplines locally, nationally and internationally through leading, facilitating and evaluating quality research that develops new knowledge and advances in research and clinical practice.

We have a vision to lead Australia’s first joint academy-industry integrated Centre for Excellence in Infection Prevention and Disease Control within Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) and the University of Sydney.

Our workplan encompasses a wide range of integrated activities to:

  • Develop research-driven, strategic, and operational plans to reduce healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) as the number one hospital-acquired complication (HAC) for WSLHD
  • Strategically review and re-organise WSLHD Infection Control Services
  • Implement integrated district wide WSLHD Infection Control Program
  • Contribute to design, develop and establish the New South Wales Biocontainment Unit (NBC)
  • Build capacity in leadership of the Infection and Immunity node within Sydney Nursing School with respect to teaching, research and engagement
  • Boost strategic leadership and development of the Marie Bashir Institute for Infectious Diseases and Biosecurity (MBI)’s Infection and Immunity nodes, to include Infection Prevention and Disease Control
  • Establish Australia’s first academy-industry integrated Centre for Excellence in Infection Prevention and Control within WSLHD and the University of Sydney

Our research activities

We have two major programs of research. 

  • AIRPROTECT which is looking at the nexus between air travel, the spread of communicable diseases and antimicrobial resistance (AMR).  
  • COVID-19 which encompasses a diverse variety of clinical, public health and community-based research projects, whose aim is to enhance our understanding of the social, clinical and health-system impacts of COIVD-19 pandemic in Australia.


Explores the availability of infection prevention and control information provided by international commercial airlines to their passengers via in-flight magazines.

Examines the availability of infection prevention and disease control information provided by international commercial airlines to their passengers via official airline websites.

Examines the motivations, opportunities and capacities of commercial airline passengers to participate in travel-associated infection prevention and control measures.

Maps passenger and staff interactions with the aircraft in-cabin surfaces using a technique commonly used in hospital settings.

Evaluates passengers and staff habits and behavior with the aircraft environment in terms of personal hand hygiene and surfaces sanitation while on board.

Identifies and characterises the AMR profile of microorganisms present on cabin surfaces of aircraft arriving into Australia from a jurisdiction with a significant burden of antibiotic resistance.


Reports the clinical and epidemiological features, laboratory data and outcomes of the first group of COVID-19 patients in Australia.

Explores and describes the lived experience of COVID-19 patients in New South Wales, Australia.

Examines health professionals’ knowledge, preparedness and experiences of managing SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 in the healthcare settings

Assesses the accuracy, efficacy and efficiency of auditing by using video surveillance footage recorded in a real-time clinical setting.

Examines staff experiences of implementing ward-based model within Westmead Hospital in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Determines current staff perspectives on how PPE use may be different post-COVID and providing a predictive model for PPE demand as hospital services come back ‘online’ post-COVID.

Aims to evaluate the effectiveness of an education-focused model targeting the general public displaying effective IPC measures to break the chain of infection for COVID-19.

Other research projects

Design and implement Healthcare-Associated Infection (HAI) prevention and control toolkits to reduce Hospital-Acquired Complications (HACs) in adults and children

Deteriming the research and practice priorities for infection prevention and control in Australia.

Identifying pragmatic, context-relevant solutions for ED clinicians’ safe, efficient and effective use of POCUS for percutaneous, needle-based procedures regarding infection prevention and control.

Examining patients’ perceptions about healthcare-associated infections, in particular (i) knowledge of the types and nature; (ii) risk factors; (iii) measures to reduce their risk of HAIs.

Follow us

If you are interested in supporting our work or would like to know more about our research programs and projects, we encourage you to contact us. We welcome any support that can help us to foster changes and make positive impacts on patients, healthcare systems and communities, both locally and globally.

Get in touch

Professor Ramon Shaban
  • The Westmead Institute Building, 176 Hawkesbury Road, Westmead