Groundbreaking HIV testing at Croydon University Hospital wins ‘Top Global Winner’ international award | Trust news

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Groundbreaking HIV testing at Croydon University Hospital wins ‘Top Global Winner’ international award

A team at Croydon University Hospital improving HIV outcomes has won ‘Top Global Winner’ at the international UNIVANTS 2021 awards.

They introduced ‘opt-out’ HIV testing in the Emergency Department at the Hospital, achieving a sustained testing rate of 97% and setting the international gold standard.

This has:

  • Increased new HIV diagnoses by three times within the hospital – diagnosing more patients than all other testing sites in Croydon combined.
  • Dramatically reduced the necessary hospital stays of newly diagnosed patients from an average of 34.9 days down to only 2.4, because more are tested while well enough to have routine care, return home quickly, and live long and healthy lives.

The team spans the Emergency Department, HIV team, Information Technology and Pathology. Together they introduced this ‘opt-out’ testing in May 2020.

Their work has been crucial because Croydon has one of the highest HIV rates in London, and late diagnosis in Croydon has often happened as late as three to five years after infection.

Consultant and Lead on the project, Dr Ian Cormack, said:

“I and the entire team are delighted with this award, which is only given for work that truly breaks new ground in healthcare. The key to our success has been very strong multi-disciplinary teamwork.

“We’re using our experience, and the new opportunities from winning this award, to help promote wider HIV testing and help others achieve effectively high rates of HIV testing like we're doing here in Croydon. Then many more people with HIV can live long and rewarding lives.”


The UNIVANTS of Healthcare Excellence is a prestigious global award programme that was created by Abbott in partnership with leading healthcare organisations across the globe with a common vision to inspire and celebrate excellence in healthcare.

This award is helping promote the success of Croydon's HIV work around the world at various global events in the coming years. The Croydon HIV team will be presenting at the Society for Improvement in Medical Diagnoses SIDM conference in Minneapolis October 2022 with more planned for 2023.


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