Infectious Diseases

Protecting our communities

The Department of Pediatrics’ Division of Infectious Diseases is focused on research, teaching, and excellent clinical care for children with acute and chronic infections. Our division includes pediatricians who are subspecialists in infectious diseases and full-time scientists who engage in research, knowledge translation, and policy development leading to improvements in health.

Research

Our research is aimed at the prevention and treatment of infection. We focus on vaccine discovery, evaluation, and health policy and translation; these vaccine-related research activities are conducted through the Canadian Center for Vaccinology. Our members are also engaged in research on inflammation, health-care-associated (nosocomial) infections, antimicrobial stewardship, and diagnostic techniques.

We collaborate with colleagues in other departments of the Faculty of Medicine, in public health, and in nongovernmental organizations. For more information on the research underway, please see our faculty section below and the Canadian Center for Vaccinology.

Teaching

We are involved in training undergraduate students (including those undertaking Honours thesis programs), Master’s and PhD students, postdoctoral fellows, medical students, residents, and postgraduate residents in clinical infectious diseases, microbiology, clinical epidemiology, and clinical skills, among other fields.

Our members also:

  • conduct seminars for the clinical clerks during each pediatric rotation and participate in resident training through
    • subspeciality seminars
    • Clinical Case Rounds
    • the PGY1 academic skills course
    • the Infectious Diseases elective;
  • accept one medical student each year for a clinical elective in the ambulatory Infectious Diseases clinic; and
  • contribute to both Halifax- and community-based continuing medical education programs for family physicians and pediatricians in the Maritimes.

Postgraduate residency training program

Our postgraduate residency program in Pediatric Infectious Diseases is accredited by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC).

The program takes two years to complete. Trainees can complete an additional 1–2 years of research training to prepare for a research-oriented academic career in Pediatric Infectious Diseases or an additional year of Medical Microbiology training to earn dual certification in Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology. The overall goal of the training program is to train residents to be well-rounded, broad-based Pediatric Infectious Disease consultants with clinical competency in Infectious Diseases, expertise in critical analysis of the scientific literature and its application to practice, and research skills in Pediatric Infectious Diseases. The program offers training opportunities in epidemiology, vaccine science, and clinical and laboratory research.

To learn more about this program, please contact Jeannette Comeau, Program Director, or Kelly LeFurgey, Program Administrator.

Clinical activities

We provide inpatient and outpatient consultative services at the IWK Health Centre for infants, children, and adolescents with acute and chronic infections.

Our Infectious Diseases Clinic provides:

  • referral for the assessment, management, and follow-up of children in the Maritimes who have chronic, opportunistic, or complicated infections;
  • a clinic for the prevention of RSV infection in high-risk infants; and
  • an immunization clinic for the re-immunization of high-risk patients.

For inpatient consults, page or telephone the on-call physician and fax the consultation form to the ID Division at 470-7232. For external consults, physicians may refer a patient to the weekly outpatient clinic by faxing a letter to the ID Division at 902-470-7232.

The Division also oversees and provides medical leadership to the IWK Health Centre’s Infection Prevention and Control Service and Antimicrobial Stewardship service. The Division assesses children with tuberculosis exposure or suspected infection and serves as the primary medical service involved in the coordinated care of children with HIV infection.

Our people

Primary appointments

Joint appointments

Cross-appointments

Adjunct appointments

  • Donna Halperin, RN, PhD
  • Charmaine McPherson, RN, PhD
  • Jeffrey Scott, MB ChB, MHSc, MHSA, FRCPC
  • Kathryn Slayter, PharmD, FCSHP (appointment in progress)

Post-retirement appointments

Contact info

Email: Kelly.LeFurgey@iwk.nshealth.ca
Phone: 902-470-7561
Fax: 902-470-7232

Address:
Division of Infectious Diseases

Department of Pediatrics

Faculty of Medicine
Dalhousie University

IWK Health Centre
Goldbloom RCC Pavilion, 4th Floor
5850/5980 University Avenue

PO Box 9700

Halifax, NS  B3K 6R8