Written in a straightforward and engaging style, this premier textbook provides students with the foundation in microbiology that they need to perform their day-to-day duties in a safe and knowledgeable manner. Coverage includes the core themes and concepts outlined for an introductory course by the American Society for Microbiology. Developed for current and future healthcare professionals, the text offers vital coverage of antibiotics and other antimicrobial agents, epidemiology and public health, hospital-acquired infections, infection control, and the ways in which microorganisms cause disease. This comprehensive new Ninth Edition explores the major viral, bacterial, fungal, and parasitic human diseases, including patient care, and how the body protects itself from pathogens and infectious diseases. A bound-in CD-ROM and a companion Website include case studies, additional self-assessment exercises, plus animations and special features that provide additional insight and fun facts on selected topics.