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French Infectious Diseases Society (SPILF)

College of Professors of Infectious and Tropical Diseases (CMIT)

What is an infectious diseases physician ?

Infectious diseases physicians are medical doctors trained in the prevention, diagnosis and therapy of communicable diseases

Since 1984, ID physicians are recognized, in France, through a specific degree (the Diplôme d'Etudes Spécialisées Complémentaires de Pathologie Infectieuse et Tropicale) obtained after 6 years of medical school, 4 to 5 years of residency and 1 to 2 years of fellowship.

In France, ID physicians include:

  • More than 60 Professors of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine  working in University Hospitals throughout the country
  • A few hundred senior physicians in University and non University Hospitals
  • A hundred Fellows in University Hospitals
All these physicians are actively involved  in direct patient care:
  • Most of them are responsible for hospital wards of infectious diseases and a few practice as consultant
  • Few are in private practice

France has around a hundred departments/wards of infectious diseases. They all are committed to:

Caring for patients with:
  • Bacterial infections (pneumonia, meningitis, urinary tract infections...)
  • Viral infections (HIV, viral hepatitis, herpes, zoster...)
  • Fungal infections (candidiasis, aspergillosis...)
  • Parasitic infections (malaria, amibiasis, toxoplasmosis...)
  • Individual counselling of candidates to travel to tropical areas
  • Prevention and management of nosocomial infections
  • Promoting rational use of antimicrobial, antiviral, antifungal and antiparasitic agents by implementing and updating institutional and national policies

Most of them also provide specific services:

  • Regional AIDS reference centers (CISIH)
  • Official international yellow fever vaccination centers
  • Reference centers for post exposure prophylaxis of rabies
  • Free anonymous testing for HIV and viral hepatitis

ID physicians are an active part of the French medical community as infectious diseases frequently overlaps with other specialties.

They are highly involved in academic and continuing medical education (CME):

  • They are responsible for infectious diseases and tropical medicine teaching of medical students in all French medical schools
  • They coordinate various University Diploma (Diplômes d'Université): Short-term courses on topics such as: HIV infection, tropical medicine, antimicrobial therapy, infection control...) for hospital physicians.
  • They are active in CME for private practice physicians, especially general practitioners
  • They organize consensus conferences in infectious diseases therapy (13 to date)
  • They publish a monthly journal:  Médecine et Maladies Infectieuses.

ID physicians and other professionals committed to infectious diseases may become active members of the Société de Pathologie Infectieuse de Langue Française (SPILF), the French Infectious Diseases Society

The Society, created in 1974, is open to all health care professionals involved in communicable diseases.

The SPILF aims are to:

Promote, help, encourage and stimulate individuals or groups dedicated to any aspects of infectious diseases.
Organize conferences, meetings and symposia on various aspect of communicable diseases.
Increase public awareness of the impact of microorganisms, infectious diseases, and issues of anti infective therapies on human beings.
Help National health care authorities draft, implement and issue recommendations on prevention, diagnosis and therapy of communicable diseases.
Cooperate with international institutions for communicable diseases. control
Publish the works of its members
And, more generaly, support any action, research, intervention and program concerning any aspect of communicable diseases.

Members of the Society

As of April 2022, members of the SPILF include 650 active members.

SPILF is open to clinicians, microbiologists, epidemiologists, pharmacists or reseachers involved in communicable diseases.

Spilf members routinely collaborate with other societies:

Société Francaise de Microbiologie (French Society of Microbiology)
Société de Réanimation de Langue Française (French Society of intensive Care)
Société Française d'Anesthésie et de Réanimation (French Society of Anesthesiology)
Groupe de Pathologie Infectieuse Pédiatrique de la Société Française de Pédiatrie (Pediatric Infectious Diseases Group of the French Pediatric Society)
Société Française d'Hygiène Hospitalière (French Hospital Hygiene Society)
Fédération Nationale des Spécialités Médicales (National Federation of Medical Specialties)

Official Journal

Médecine et Maladies Infectieuses, published monthly by éditions Elsevier

Main activities of the Society

Consensus conferences in antiinfective therapy:

18 conferences have been organized to date. The most recent are published in both English and French

Scientific meetings

  • Interdisciplinary meeting in anti infectious therapy (early december, in Paris)
  • National meeting on infectious diseases (mid june, various French cities)
  • Joint meeting with INSERM (National Institute for Medical Research)

Awards and Grants

For more information about the Society

President: Professeur France Roblot
Maladies Infectieuses
CHU Poitiers

Professors of infectious diseases and tropical medicine all belong to the Collège des Universitaires de Maladies Infectieuses et Tropicales (CMIT).

It was created in 1972

CMIT members are clinicians specialized in Infectious and Tropical Diseases :

  • Acute and prolonged fever.
  • Community acquired infections: respiratory, urinary tract, meningeal, bone and joint, cutaneous, cardiac and other infections …
  • HIV and AIDS, hepatitis B and C.
  • Health problems in the traveler.
  • Nosocomial infections and management of anti infective therapy.
  • Reference centers for testing, diagnosis, therapy of HIV, HVB, HVC  and management of accidental blood exposure to these viruses.
  • Travel clinic and international vaccination centers.

They are active in medical research.

  • Principal investigators for nationwide clinical research protocols,
  • In the academic, hospital and outpatient setting :
Infectious diseases epidemiology,
Anti infective chemotherapy (antibiotics, antivirals, antiparasitic drugs)
,Cohort studies (HIV, HVC, bone and joint infections…),
Studies on the value of rapid diagnosis tests in infectious diseases.
  • In basic research :
    • CMIT is an organizing and teaching member of the  DEA“Maladies transmissibles et pathologies tropicales” (Master lever research degree) from Marseille University.

They are academic teachers.

  • At all levels of medical studies
    • First two years of medical school: clinical signs of infectious and tropical diseases.
    • Third to sixth years of medical school: Diagnosis, therapy and prevention of infectious and tropical diseases.
    • Residency and CME with university of multi-university degrees:
      • Anti infective chemeotherapy.
      • Community acquired infections
      • Hospital acquired infections
      • HIV and AIDS
      • Bone and joint infections......
  • DEA
Continuing Medical Education in infectious and tropical diseases
  • For private and public practice doctors (general practionners and specialists)
  • For hospital physicians.
  • For Infectious and Tropical Diseases physicians.

They organize and participate in meetings :

They publish reference books

  • Original method
  • All books are writen jointly :
    • Diagnosis, therapy and management thus reflect the opinion of the whole specialty.
    • The books are updated every two years thus providing up to date information for medical students and physicians.
    • Some books are  free thanks to educational grants from the pharmaceutical industry, the others have a low price, easying their diffusion.
    • Each book is targeted toward different audiences.


This is theFrench reference book in infectious diseases. It mainly targets medical students but can be used in private practice and in the hospital.


It is a quick reference book for therapy of infectious diseases, targeting mainly the residents and the non specialized hospital physicians.

For more information about CMIT

Pr Sébastien GALLIEN, Secrétaire
Service d'Immunologie Clinique et Maladies Infectieuses
Hôpital Henri MONDOR - 51 Av. Mar de Lattre de Tassigny
Téléphone (ligne directe) :