The Department of Microbiology is located on level 5 in Derriford Hospital, Plymouth. We are a large department employing over 50 members of staff comprising medical, scientific, ancillary and clerical grades. The department processes in excess of 500,000 specimens each year. We provide a comprehensive diagnostic microbiology, serology and molecular biology service.


Data Protection Policy:

Microbiology Department regards the lawful and correct treatment of patients’ personal information as vital to successful operations and to maintaining the confidence of users of the service. Our policy is to treat personal information lawfully and correctly and therefore we fully endorse and adhere to the principles of data protection defined in the Data Protection Act 1998.

As part of Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust we also work to its governance and data protection policies which incorporate the Data Protection Act.



Patient consent is required for the use of tissues removed at surgical procedures for research (with certain exceptions), transplantation or obtaining medical information relevant to another person e.g. genetic information. 

Consent is not required for the use of tissue from living patients for the following purposes; clinical audit, quality control, public health monitoring, education or training in relation to human health, although it is good practice to inform patients that their tissues may be used for these purposes via patient information literature, and should any patient specify that they do not want their samples to be kept or used for such purposes, these should be respected. These latter uses of tissue are essential to ensure the high quality of service, which all patients have the right to expect. Wherever possible, samples of tissue used in this way should be anonymised or pseudonymised.



As a department we aim to provide you with the best possible service at all times. If you have cause to send feedback regarding the service you have received, whether complaint or compliment, please contact one of the managers below.  We will do all we can to help.

  • Microbiology Quality Manager – John Hooper(01752) 792369, Internal 52369 johnhooper@nhs.net


The Quality Policy of the department of Microbiology


In order to ensure that the needs and requirements of users are met, the Department of Microbiology will:


  • Operate a quality management system to integrate the organisation, procedures, processes and resources.
  • Offer a range of clinical microbiological, serological and molecular services as befits the needs of the users.
  • At the laboratory’s Annual Management Review, set measurable quality objectives that will be reviewed regularly by management throughout the year to assess their progress, effectiveness and implementation.
  • Ensure that staff are familiar with the contents of the Quality Manual and all procedures relevant to their work
  • Ensure that all personnel are familiar with this quality policy to ensure user satisfaction.
  • Commit to the health, safety and welfare of all its staff.  Visitors to the department will be treated with respect and due consideration will be given to their safety while on site.
  • Uphold professional values and commit to good professional practice and conduct.


The Department will comply with the ISO15189:2012 standard for medical laboratories and submit to assessment by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) to ensure:


  • Staff recruitment and retention, training, competency and development at all levels to provide a full and effective service to its users
  • The proper procurement and maintenance of such equipment and other resources as are needed for the provision of the service
  • The collection, transport and handling of all specimens in such a way as to ensure the correct performance of laboratory examinations
  • The use of examination procedures that will ensure results of the highest achievable quality and value to users
  • Reporting results of examinations in ways which are timely, confidential, accurate and clinically useful
  • Communicating with users and assessing their satisfaction with the laboratory’s service, in addition to internal audit and external quality assessment, with a view to continual quality improvement.
  • Complying with relevant environmental policies issued by the Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust


Useful Telephone Numbers
Useful Telephone Numbers
  External Internal
Microbiology Results and General Enquiries 437745 37745
On call Consultant or named Consultant (If urgent bleep via switchboard) 437745 37745
Dr Jim Greig, Head of Department, Consultant Medical Microbiologist    
Dr Jane Steer, Consultant Medical Microbiologist    
Dr Peter Jenks, Consultant Medical Microbiologist and Director Infection Prevention & Control    
Dr Richard Cunningham, Consultant Medical Microbiologist    
Dr Robert Tilley, Consultant Medical Microbiologist    
Dr Rosie Fok, Consultant Medical Microbiologist & Lead for Antimicrobial Stewardship    
Dr Lewis Jones, Consultant Medical Microbiologist    
Mr Allan Speirs, Laboratory Manager 792369 52369
Mr Mark Wallis, Lead BMS Virology 437750 37750


Review Status

Reviewed March 2019 
This page will be updated June 2019

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