Professor Jonathan Ross MBChB MD FRCP

Jonathan Ross

Institute of Microbiology and Infection
Professor of Sexual Health and HIV

Contact details

University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Jonathan Ross is Professor of Sexual Health and HIV and a Consultant Physician at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust.

His research interests relate to gonorrhoea, Mycoplasma genitalium, HIV, bacterial vaginosis and sexual health care service delivery.


  • Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians
  • Doctorate in Medicine
  • MBChB


Professor Ross’s research is focused on improving the delivery of high quality sexual and reproductive health care through:

  • a program of health care services research
  • increasing research capacity within the field of sexual health and HIV
  • supporting the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Clinical Research Network

His research partners include Birmingham City University, Aston University, Warwick University, University of Nottingham, Glasgow Caledonian University, Public Health England and the Sanger Institute.

The sexual health and HIV research team is based within the Umbrella Sexual Health Partnership and comprises:

  • 15 NHS consultant medical staff
  • 6 Medical Trainees
  • 1 Research Manager
  • 2 Clinical Research Fellows
  • 1 Academic Research Fellow
  • 2 Research Nurses
  • 1 Research Assistant
  • 7 PhD Students

The major research themes of the unit are focused on:

  • sexual health service delivery
  • diagnosis and treatment of sexually transmitted infections
  • human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)


Postgraduate supervision

Supervisor for 7 PhD projects at University of Birmingham, University of Warwick, Birmingham City University and Aston University:

  • 2016-2020 - Evaluation of the impact on individuals and wider society of remote testing for sexually transmitted infections.
  • 2017-2020 - Evaluating Pharmacy delivered sexual health services.
  • 2017-2020 - Immune responses to N gonorrhoeae.
  • 2018-2021 - Identifying and developing approaches for the economic evaluation of sexually transmitted infection screening and testing interventions: a case study of the Umbrella sexual health system in Birmingham and Solihull.
  • 2018-2021 - Measuring and assessing patient experience and satisfaction with Umbrella services.
  • 2018-2021 - Identifying, measuring and valuing intersectoral costs and benefits: a case study of sexual health services.
  • 2018-2021 - Teens' experiences of sexual assault.
  • 2019-2023 - An exploration of the barriers and facilitators at the level of the service user and healthcare provider that influence health care utilisation after sexual violence 


Current and recent research funding


  • Improving care for people with sexually transmitted infections in a digital NHS
  • NIHR Programme Grant for Applied Research - £2.5 million (co-investigator)


  • Assessing the impact of introducing online STI postal self-sampling services into sexual health provision within the UK on health inequalities, access to care and clinical outcomes 
  • NIHR HS&DR - £927 225 (co-investigator)


  • Dequalinium versus usual care antibiotics for the treatment of bacterial vaginosis (DEVA): a multicentre randomised, open  label, non-inferiority trial
  • NIHR Health Technology Assessment -  £1.1million (Chief Investigator)


  • Accessing testing for sexually transmitted infections online
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections Research Foundation - £7761 (co-investigator)


  • A randomised controlled trial to assess the clinical and cost effectiveness of topical lactic acid gel for treating second and subsequent episodes of bacterial vaginosis
  • NIHR Health Technology Assessment -  £1.5million (Chief Investigator)


  • Assessing the impact on individuals and wider society of remote testing for STI
  • ESRC Studentship - £30,000 (PhD Supervisor)


  • Measuring patient experience and outcome in health care settings on receiving care after sexual violence: a systematic review
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections Research Foundation - £11,200 (Co-Investigator)


  • Understanding young people’s perceptions of the value of STI testing and exploring preferences for STI testing in different settings
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections Research Foundation - £49,986 (Co-Investigator)

 Professor Ross' recent Sexual Health and HIV Academic Unit Summary Report.

Other activities

Professor Ross is a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Journals Library Editor and Treasurer of the International Union against Sexually Transmitted Infections. He is an Associate Editor of the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections, a member of the Editorial Board for the European Sexually Transmitted Diseases Guidelines and sits on the NIHR Health Technology Assessment Funding Committee.

He is the author of UK and European Guidelines on Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, and has written a number of chapters on pelvic infection for medical textbooks. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Cochrane Collaboration Sexually Transmitted Diseases Collaborative Review Group and the International Journal of STD and AIDS Journal.


Ayinde O and Ross JDC. Factors associated with severity and resolution of intramuscular injection site pain following treatment for uncomplicated gonorrhoea: A prospective cohort study of GToG trial participants. Sexual Health 2020  

Mensforth S and Ross JDC. Spontaneous clearance of genital and extra-genital Neisseria gonorrhoeae: data from the GToG trial. Sex Trans Infect  2020;96:556–561 

Savaris RF, Fuhrich DG, Maissiat J, Duarte RV and Ross JDC. Antibiotic therapy for pelvic inflammatory disease. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2020, Issue 8. Art. No.: CD010285. 

Spence T, Kander I, Walsh J, Griffiths J and Ross JDC. Perceptions and Experiences of Internet-Based Testing for Sexually Transmitted Infections: Systematic Review and Synthesis of Qualitative Research.  Journal of Medical Internet Research 2020;22(8):e17667

Unemo M, Ross JDC, Serwin A, Gomberg M, Cusini M and Jensen J. 2020 European guideline for the diagnosis and treatment of gonorrhoea in adults. International Journal of STD & AIDS. 2020 

Ross JDC, Brittain C, Cole M, Dewsnap C, Harding J, Hepburn T, Jackson L, Keogh M, Lawrence T, Montgomery AA, Roberts TE, Sprange K, Tan W, Thandi S, White J, Wilson J and Duley L, on behalf of the G-ToG Trial Team. Gentamicin compared with Ceftriaxone for the treatment of gonorrhoea: a randomised trial (G-ToG Trial). Lancet 2019;393:2511-2520 

Caswell R, Ross JDC and Lorimer K. Measuring experience and outcomes in patients reporting sexual violence who attend a health care setting: a systematic reviewSex Trans Infect  2019;95:419-427

Mensforth S and Ross JDC. Should we still use azithromycin for gonorrhoea treatment? Sexual Health  2019;16:442–448.

Cole M, Tan W, Fifer H, Brittain Ce, Duley L, Hepburn T, Lawrence T, Montgomery A,  Sprange K, Thandi S, Churchward C, Tripodo F, Woodford N and Ross JDCGentamicin, azithromycin and ceftriaxone in the treatment of gonorrhoea; the relationship between antibiotic minimum inhibitory concentration and clinical outcome. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy  2019.

Watkins J, Ross JDC, Thandi S, Brittain C, Kai J and Griffiths F. Acceptability of and Treatment Preferences for Recurrent Bacterial Vaginosis - Topical Lactic Acid Gel or Oral Metronidazole Antibiotic: Qualitative Findings from the VITA Trial. PLoS ONE 2019; 14(11): e0224964.