Our History

Our History

In the early years of the 21st century, India grappled with formidable challenges in the realm of infectious diseases. Tuberculosis, a longstanding affliction, and the emerging threat of HIV created a complex healthcare landscape. By the early 2000s, tuberculosis accounted for a significant portion of global cases, causing nearly half a million deaths annually. Simultaneously, the relentless spread of HIV, often coexisting with tuberculosis, claimed millions of lives, necessitating intricate and specialized management.

Recognizing the urgency of the situation, luminaries such as doctors Dilip Mathai, George K Varghese, OC Abraham, Ram Gopalakrishnan, FD Dastur, Rajiv Soman, and V Ramasubramanian pioneered the establishment of dedicated infectious diseases departments in institutions like Christian Medical College, Vellore, Apollo Hospitals, Chennai, and Hinduja Hospital, Mumbai.

Inspired by their vision, a cohort of professionals who had completed infectious diseases training abroad returned to India, aiming to further the legacy of those who laid the foundation for the field. In 2008, the National Board of Examinations took a monumental step by launching the country's first 2-year post-doctoral fellowship program in Infectious Diseases, later followed by university-recognized fellowship programs.

Amid these transformative developments, the need for a collective and specialized response to infectious diseases became increasingly evident. This backdrop set the stage for the establishment of the Clinical Infectious Diseases Society (CIDS) following a meeting at Christian Medical College, Vellore, on 13th March 2010. The following founding members provided the leadership and shaped the CIDS:

  1. Dilip Mathai, Vellore
  2. Ram Gopalakrishnan, Chennai
  3. OC Abraham, Vellore
  4. George M Varghese, Vellore
  5. V Ramasubramanian, Chennai
  6. George K Varghese, Bangalore
  7. Abdul Ghafur, Chennai
  8. Sunitha Desikan, Bangalore
  9. Purnima Parthasarathy, Bangalore
  10. Suneetha Narreddy, Hyderabad
  11. Lavanya Nutankalva, Hyderabad  
  12. Rajeev Soman, Mumbai

Driven by the shared objective of waging a concerted battle against infectious diseases, the CIDS emerged as a beacon of hope, a collaborative platform, and a repository of expertise dedicated to comprehensively addressing the burden of infectious diseases in India. Subsequently, the Medical Council of India officially recognized the 3-year post-doctoral training program, Doctorate in Medicine (DM), in 2016, solidifying the specialty's place within India's medical landscape.

Since its inception, CIDS has made significant strides in shaping the landscape of infectious diseases in India. The society's annual conference, CIDSCON, has become the premier infectious disease conference in the country. Notably, the impactful 'Chennai Declaration' against antimicrobial resistance was introduced during the second annual meeting of CIDS.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, CIDS demonstrated leadership by conducting numerous Continuing Medical Education (CME) programs and providing evidence-based guidelines amid uncertainty. CIDS has played an active role in promoting infectious diseases education in the country, facilitating subspecialist fellowship training, and influencing the incorporation of infectious diseases in the undergraduate and postgraduate curriculum.

CIDS continues to grow and expand, welcoming members who share its commitment to advancing the specialty of infectious diseases. As we reflect on our history, we remain dedicated to the mission of enhancing clinical care, disseminating knowledge, advancing research, and advocating for the highest standards in patient care. The journey of CIDS is a testament to the collective determination to create a healthier and more resilient India in the face of infectious diseases.

Past Office Bearers

Year President Secretary Treasurer
2021-23 Dr. V Ramasubramanian Dr. Priscilla Rupali Dr. Suneetha Narreddy
2019-21 Dr. OC Abraham Dr. Senthur Nambi Dr. Suneetha Narreddy
2017-19 Dr. George K Varghese Dr. Subramanian Swaminathan Dr. George M Varghese
2015-17 Dr. Shyam Sundar Dr. V Ramasubramanian Dr. George M Varghese
2013-15 Dr. Ram Gopalakrishnan Dr. George M Varghese Dr. OC Abraham
2010-13 Dr. Dilip Mathai Dr. OC Abraham Dr. V Ramasubramanian