12 February 2021
Help us make history
We’re launching the #OurHIStory campaign to uncover your photos, mementos and memories of HIS.
Read on to find out how you can help us make history.

As anybody who had a big event in the calendar for 2020 knows, the COVID-19 pandemic has transformed celebrations with friends into digital-only affairs. Last year, HIS was due to celebrate the 40th anniversary of both HIS and of our official journal, the Journal of Hospital Infection, with physical events designed to honour the work members have put into HIS conferences, workshops, publications, educational programmes and more over the years.

Plans to meet in person and toast the achievements of HIS members past and present have had to be largely put on hold – but we have not wasted our hours in lockdown!

For posterity: uncovering our history


Susan Huang and Gary French

Above: Gary French presents 2018 Lowbury Lecturer Susan Huang with a copy of prize book Mystic Bridge.


We have been looking back over the past 40 years of the Society’s history: reading up on our founding members’ drive to represent medical microbiologists with a brand-new Society, looking at photos from HIS events and lecture tours around the world, and getting a sense from members’ tales of just how adaptable the Society has been through the years – and how well that adaptability has served us during the seismic events of 2020.

You can read about all of this in our new open access book, Healthcare Infection Society: Forty Years and Counting. The book officially launched on Friday 12 February, and you can download a complimentary copy here.

You are part of our story

In talking to members about those early days at HIS, it became apparent that while we have the meeting minutes and conference proceedings to tell us the ‘what and when’ of our history, the rest of the story of HIS resides in our members’ personal memories, stories, and photos.


To give a fuller sense of the Society’s development, we are launching the Our HIStory campaign. We want to hear members’ stories – which HIS events you attended, how HIS helped you in your careers, who you met along the way, where life has led you since and why the Society means something to you.  

How you can get involved

Until 1 June 2021, if you have a story or image you would like to share, please email it to admin@his.org.uk or use #OurHIStory on Twitter to tag photos and share memories.

We will gather our crowdsourced contributions for inclusion in the second edition of Healthcare Infection Society: Forty Years and Counting. The second edition will printed during 2022, in time for our rescheduled special celebration event in May 2022.

The book will be archived for posterity in both the Wellcome Library and at the HIS Newsom Library at our new HQ, Montagu House.  


Shaheen Mehtar, Nizam Damani, Margaret Worsley and Mike Emmerson at a
Safety Meeting in Cambridge in 1997.