Implementation of AEGISS2 and Modern Microbiology

We will implement AEGISS2, the statistical system developed in Work Package 1, and the modern microbiological techniques from Work Package 2 alongside current methods of testing for the causes of diarrhoea/ diarrhoea and vomiting and detecting outbreaks. 

Members of the public who seek health advice for symptoms of diarrhoea/diarrhoea and vomiting will be invited to take part in the study. Patients who give their consent will be asked to provide a sample of their faeces (stool sample). They will be given an information sheet, sample pot, instructions for taking a sample and pre-paid packaging to return the sample to the laboratory for testing. Patients will also be asked for permission to use their clinical details.

Patients’ samples will be tested using both the modern microbiological approaches described in Work Package 2, and the tests currently used by the laboratories to find the causes of diarrhoea/ diarrhoea and vomiting infections. All test results will be reported to General Practitioners and to Public Health England. Public Health England will take any public health action that is needed.

We will compare the ability of the current and modern microbiology approaches to detect pathogens, the bugs that cause infections. We will also look at how long the new active surveillance system, AEGISS2, and the current system take to detect outbreaks, the size and spread of the outbreaks they detect, and therefore how quickly public health action can be taken.