Professor Alastair Hay

Photo of Professor Alastair Hay

Professor Alastair Hay

Room 1.01d,
39 Whatley Road, Bristol
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Telephone Number (0117) 928 7376
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School of Social and Community Medicine

Community and primary care based infection research


Alastair qualified with Distinction in Medicine from Sheffield Medical School in 1991. He has been a General Practitioner since 1997 and joined the Academic Unit of Primary Health Care at the University of Bristol in 2001. His overall career aim is to produce nationally and internationally valued primary care research and promote and deliver high quality clinical care and teaching in the context of academic and clinical multi-disciplinary teams.

Research overview

I conduct national and international level research that improves the primary care management of acute, largely but not exclusively paediatric, infections. I am currently involved in and wish to collaboratively develop, multi-disciplinary research capacity in three areas: (1) to improve the targeting and effective use of antibiotics and health care resources for patients with infections, (2) to further investigate the relationship between primary care prescribed antibiotics (and vaccines) and antimicrobial resistance and (3) to develop and evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of interventions that support the care of patients with infections at home.

Key words

Antimicrobial resistance Antibiotics Infection Primary Care

Diseases related to this field of research

Respiratory tract infections Urinary tract infections

Research group

Christie Cabral, Fran Carroll, Hannah Christensen, Ceire Costelloe, Harriet Downing, Rachel Ginham, Kim Harman, Niamh Redmond

Techniques in routine use

Systematic reviews Randomised controlled trials Prospective cohort and case control studies Qualitative methods


Peter Muir Andrew Lovering Alasdair MacGowan John Leeming Patricia Lucas Peter Blair Jenny Ingram Jeremy Horwood Tim Peters Jonathan Sterne


Alastair leads the organisation and delivery of the Primary Health Care teaching of communication skills to Bristol medical students. On the postgraduate side, he teaches Critical Appraisal skills to Academic F2 and Academic Clinical Fellow Doctors.

Public engagement

Alastair is a GP, currently working at Concord Medical Centre in North Bristol two sessions per week.


I have two broad research interests relating to primary care: 1)The diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of common problems presenting to primary care, for example acute cough and fever in children. 2) The appropriate use of antibiotics in primary care and the relationship between primary care antibiotics and the development of antimicrobial resistance in the community.

Expertise key words

  • child
  • common illnesses
  • diagnosis
  • antibiotics
  • antibiotic resistance
  • primary health care

  • Key publications

    1. Hay, A 2010, ‘Managing UTI in primary care: should we be sending midstream urine samples?’. British Journal of General Practice, vol 576., pp. 479 - 480
    2. Hay, A 2010, ‘Interactive booklet reduces antibiotic prescribing for respiratory tract infections in children, but not parent satisfaction’. Evidence-Based Medicine, vol 15., pp. 16 - 17
    3. Costelloe, C, Metcalfe, C, Lovering, A, Mant, D & Hay, A 2010, ‘Effect of antibiotic prescribing in primary care on antimicrobial resistance in individual patients: systematic review and meta-analysis’. British Medical Journal, vol 340.
    4. Hay, A & Juttner, K 2009, ‘Prescribing antibiotics for acute cough in primary care: Can be reduced by improving communication and measuring CRP’. BMJ, vol 338., pp. 1008 - 1089
    5. Wye, L, Hay, A, Northstone, K, Bishop, J, Headley, J & Thompson, E 2008, ‘Complementary or alternative? The use of homeopathic products and antibiotics amongst preschool children’. BMC Family Practice, vol 9:8.
    6. Hay, A, Costelloe, C, Redmond, N, Montgomery, A, Fletcher, M, Hollinghurst, S & Peters, T 2008, ‘Paracetamol plus ibuprofen for the treatment of fever in children (PITCH): randomised controlled trial’. British Medical Journal, vol 337.
    7. Hollinghurst, S, Redmond, N, Costelloe, C, Montgomery, A, Fletcher, M, Peters, T & Hay, A 2008, ‘Paracetamol plus ibuprofen for the treatment of fever in children (PITCH): economic evaluation of a randomised controlled trial’. British Medical Journal, vol 337.
    8. Hay, A, Thomas, M, Montgomery, A, Wetherell, M, Lovering, A, McNulty, C, Lewis, D, Carron, B, Henderson, E & MacGowan, A 2005, ‘The relationship between primary care antibiotic prescribing and bacterial resistance in adults in the community: a controlled observational study using individual patient data’. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, vol 56 (1)., pp. 146 - 153
    9. Hay, A 2004, ‘Review: delaying a prescription reduces antibiotic use in upper respiratory tract infections’. Evidence-Based Healthcare, vol 9(4)., pp. 108 - 108

    Full publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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