The Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) is a professional medical organisation, comprised predominantly of clinical immunology and allergy medical specialists. The ASCIA membership also includes other medical practitioners, scientists and allied health professionals (mainly nurses and dietitians) who work in the areas of allergy and immunology.
ASCIA is a member society of the World Allergy Organisation (WAO) and the Asia Pacific Association of Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology (APAAACI).
ASCIA mission statement
The mission of ASCIA is to advance the science and practice of clinical immunology and allergy, by promoting education and the highest standard of ethical medical practice.
The specific objectives of ASCIA are to:
- Promote and advance the study and knowledge of allergy and other immune diseases, including asthma
- Advance and maintain the highest standards of scientific and medical practice among those professionally engaged in the areas of clinical immunology and allergy
- Be recognised as the foremost authority in clinical immunology and allergy in Australia and New Zealand.
To achieve these objectives the main activities of ASCIA are to:
- Promote the highest standards of scientific and medical practice and education amongst its members by providing high quality continuing education at ASCIA Annual Conferences.
- Provide advice and representation to government departments and other professional organisations, by developing reports, submissions and responses relevant to allergy and other immune diseases.
- Liaise with relevant patient and consumer organisations
- Promote research and clinical trials
- Coordinate education programs for its members, other health professionals and the public, including free of charge e-training courses, patient and health professional information.
The following ASCIA committees are standing committees of the ASCIA Council, continuing indefinitely, with representation on Council:
- ASCIA Anaphylaxis committee
- ASCIA Education committee
- ASCIA Laboratory Practice committee
- ASCIA Paediatric committee
- ASCIA Immunodeficiency committee
In addition to the above mentioned committees there are ASCIA working parties and subcommittees, which are not standing committees of the ASCIA Council.
For more information see:
For qualifications of members see:
Allergy and Immunology Foundation of Australasia (AIFA)
AIFA is an initiative of ASCIA and was launched in September 2013. The aim of AIFA is to provide funding to support medical research and education into disorders of the human immune system in Australia and New Zealand. These disorders comprise allergic diseases (including asthma) primary immunodeficiency diseases and autoimmune diseases.
ASCIA sponsorship policy
ASCIA is a not-for-profit professional medical society, a non-government organisation and the peak professional body of Allergy and Clinical Immunology Specialists in Australia and New Zealand. As such, ASCIA cannot endorse products or services, nor advertise any products or services on its website, nor be influenced by commercial organisations on the content of its educational programs and website.
ASCIA's educational activities include:
- Health professional programs (e.g. ASCIA Annual Conferences, ASCIA Advanced Training meetings, ASCIA health professional information papers and position statements, ASCIA disease registers and procedural databases, ASCIA e-training courses for health professionals).
- Public education programs (e.g. ASCIA Education Resources patient information, ASCIA anaphylaxis resources, ASCIA e-training courses for schools, childcare services and community).
ASCIA's educational activities are dependent on:
- ASCIA members donating their unpaid time for resource development.
- Funding derived from membership fees, small educational grants from some state governments for specific projects and unrestricted educational grants from industry.
It is important to note that:
- Providers of unrestricted educational grants have no input into resource content or development and ASCIA does not endorse any products.
- ASCIA does not currently receive any funding from the federal Australian government nor from the New Zealand government.
- Links to external websites from the ASCIA website does not imply that their products or services are endorsed by ASCIA.
Sponsorship can comprise a combination of support for any of the following:
- ASCIA Annual Conference - exhibition and sponsorship
- ASCIA Education Resources (AER) – brochure printing and distribution rights
- ASCIA e-training courses – unrestricted educational grants
- ASCIA Advanced Training Meetings - unrestricted educational grants
- ASCIA disease registers – unrestricted educational grants
- ASCIA procedural databases – unrestricted educational grants
Organisations that are deemed appropriate sponsors (by ASCIA Council) are categorized as follows:
- Diamond: $40,000 (AUD) or more per annum
- Platinum: $25,000 - $40,000 (AUD) per annum
- Gold: $15,000 - $25,000 (AUD) per annum
ASCIA conferences and meetings
ASCIA Annual Conferences are usually held in September, with locations rotating between Australian states and New Zealand on approximately a six year cycle. Further information is available at www.allergy.org.au/conferences/ascia-annual-conference
The ASCIA Annual General Meeting (AGM) is usually held during the ASCIA Annual Conference, at the same venue. Every two years a new ASCIA Council is nominated and an election is held at the AGM for these positions.
In some years the ASCIA Annual Conference may be held in conjunction with international meetings, such as the World Allergy Congress held in Sydney during the year 2000.
In addition there are more regular educational meetings for ASCIA members which are organised by local ASCIA area representatives.
ASCIA website educational resources
To meet the challenge of increasing demand for education, ASCIA has developed several web based educational resources that are available at no charge on the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au
- e-training courses for health professionals, schools and childcare staff and first aid (community)
- anaphylaxis resources, including ASCIA action plans, FAQ and guidelines
- information on allergy and other immune disorders for health professionals, patients and consumers.
All ASCIA educational resources (including e-training courses) are developed through an extensive and rigorous consultation process involving ASCIA committees, working parties and end users, followed by a review process involving the entire ASCIA membership.
To ensure that ASCIA web based educational resources (including e-training courses) are accurate, provide consistent information and are accessible throughout Australia and New Zealand, they are only available from the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au at no charge.
ASCIA does not allow its educational resources to be uploaded on other websites, unless a licencing agreement has been approved by ASCIA Council.. ASCIA provides permission for appropriate organisations to link to ASCIA webpages to access ASCIA educational resources. By linking to the ASCIA website it ensures that only current versions are being accessed, as resources are regularly updated based on changes in the medical literature and expert reviews.
Membership applications are available from the ASCIA Executive Officer or the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au Completed applications will be considered by the ASCIA Council at one of their regular meetings.
It is important to note that ASCIA is not a credentialling organisation and as such, ASCIA membership should not be used as a qualification.
There are two main categories of ASCIA membership:
Full (ordinary) membership
These members are Specialists in Clinical Immunology and Allergy or related fields, or postgraduate qualified Immunologists (PhD), with training in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of immune and allergic diseases. Full members can be candidates for most ASCIA Council positions and have full voting rights at ASCIA Annual General Meetings.
Medical practitioners, Scientists, Dietitians and Nurses with a professional interest in allergy, asthma and/or immune diseases may apply for Associate membership of ASCIA. Associate members are represented on the ASCIA Council by an Associate representative and a GP Liaison representative and have limited voting rights at ASCIA annual general meetings.
For more information about membership criteria and forms visit:
A brief history of how ASCIA was formed
There have been considerable scientific advances in our knowledge of how the immune system works over the last fifty years. This is reflected in how allergy, asthma and immune diseases are now treated, the training of specialists treating these diseases, and in the constitution and history of the organisation now known as ASCIA:
- In 1953 the Australian Society of Allergists (ASA) was registered under the auspice of the British Medical Association (Australia) and in 1962 the ASA was incorporated.
- In 1970 the ASA became the Australian College of Allergists which later changed its name and constitution to become the Australian College of Allergy (ACA).
- In 1970 the Australasian Society of Immunology (ASI) was established.
- In 1983 the Clinical Immunology Group (CIG) constitution was adopted by the ASI as a special interest group.
- In 1991 the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) was established, by amalgamating the ACA with the ASI CIG.
(Reference: Donald, Gwen. ACA Newsletter 9; 1990)
Content updated May 2014