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


  • 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)


  • 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)


  • Evaluating and improving sexual healthcare delivery in Birmingham
  • Birmingham City Council - £840, 000 (R&D Lead Applicant)


  • A randomised controlled trial to compare the clinical effectiveness and safety of gentamicin and ceftriaxone in the treatment of gonorrhoea
  • NIHR Health Technology Assessment -  £1.3million (Chief 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.


Savaris RF, Fuhrich DG, Duarte RV, Franik S and Ross J.  Antibiotic therapy for pelvic inflammatory disease: an abridged version of a Cochrane systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trialsSexually Transmitted Infections 2019;95:21–27 

Ross JDC, Harding J, Duley L, Montgomery AA, Hepburn T, Tan W, Brittain C, Meakin G, Sprange K, Thandi S, Jackson L, Roberts T, Wilson J, White J, Dewsnap C, Cole M, Lawrence T, on behalf of the G-TOG Collaborative Group. A randomised controlled trial to compare the clinical effectiveness, cost effectiveness and safety of gentamicin and ceftriaxone in the treatment of gonorrhoea (The G-TOG Trial)NIHR Health Technology Assessment Journal   2019 Volume: 23, Issue: 20

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 

Gauly J, Ross JDC, Hall I, Soda I, Armoiry X and Atherton H. Pharmacy-based sexual health services: a systematic review of experiences and attitudes of pharmacy users and pharmacy staff. Sex Trans Infect  2019;95:488-495.

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

Toorabally N, Mercer CH, Mitchell KR, Blell M, Burns F, Gilson R, McGregor-Read J, Allan S, de Ruiter A, Dhairyawan R, Fox J, Gilleece Y, Jones R, Mackie N, Obeyesekera S, Post F, Reeves I, Rosenvinge M, Ross J,  Sarner L, Sullivan A, Tariq A, Ustianowski A, Sabin CA and Tariq S. Association of HIV status with sexual function in women aged 45-60 in England: results from two national surveysAIDS Care  2019.

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

Lowe P, Pilcher K, Pattison H, Whittaker V, Robertson C and Ross JDC. Pregnancy Prevention and Contraceptive Preferences of Online Sex Workers in the UK. The European Journal of Contraception and Reproductive Health Care 2019.

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.

Lorimer L, DeAmicis L, Dalrymple J, Frankis J, Jackson LJ, Lorgelly P, McMillan L and Ross JDC. A rapid review of sexual wellbeing definitions and measures: should we now include sexual wellbeing freedom? Journal of Sex Research 2019.

Armstrong-Buisseret L, Brittain C, David M, Dean G, Griffiths F, Hepburn T, Jackson L, Kai J, Montgomery A, Roberts T, Thandi S and Ross JDCMetronidazole versus lactic acid for treating bacterial vaginosis (VITA): protocol for 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. Trials  2019.

Ayinde O, Tan W, Hepburn T and Ross JDCFactors associated with time to presentation for individuals with symptomatic uncomplicated genital gonorrhoea; a cross sectional cohort study of GToG trial participantsSex Trans Infect 2020;0:1–7.