Background/introduction A 2009 decision to relocate a sexual health and HIV clinic to an area with the highest density of gay venues in Europe was based on the belief that positioning a service directly where a high risk and vulnerable population socialised would facilitate regular sexual health screening for men who have sex with men (MSM), improve the early detection of HIV and other infections, and reduce onward transmission.
Aim(s)/objectives This study examined whether the relocation had led to the anticipated increase in overall attendances and pathology specifically in MSM beyond the increase in national STI rates reported by Public Health England. As the relocation effect cannot be directly measured, any significant discrepancy between the two rates could be used as a proxy for success.
Methods Attendances and infection rates for 2008 at the former clinic were compared with those for 2013 at the new clinic (from KC60 codes). The overall infection increase was then compared with the increase in STI rates reported nationally by Public Health England between 2008 and 2013. The specific proportion of infections in MSM was compared with the national data for 2013.
Results Attendances increased by 22% from 56,181 to 68,395, with 61% of patients in 2013 reported as homosexual. The increase in infections significantly exceeded both this and rates reported by PHE, with 84% of infections reported in MSM.
Discussion/conclusion There was a significant disproportionate rise in the detection of infection compared to attendances. This suggests the intervention was successful at reaching the high risk groups targeted.
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