Introduction Sexually transmissible infections (STIs) including HIV remain a significant public health issue for gay men and men who have sex with men (MSM). General Practitioners (GPs) play an essential role in STI testing and management with over 50% of testing in NSW occurring within general practice settings. In 2014 the Sydney Gay Friendly GP list was updated by the STIs in Gay Men Action Group and through this process, it was identified that some GPs needed further training.
Methods A literature review was conducted mid-2014 which identified online learning as an effective modality for providing GPs with MSM relevant training. An expert committee was established including GP and community representatives to provide input and guide the development of the online learning module (OLM). Key issues around primary care experiences of MSM were identified and a 60 min self-paced OLM was developed. The interactive OLM aims to increase the competence and confidence of GPs and other health professionals in identifying and addressing issues related to sexual health and wellbeing relevant to MSM.
Results The OLM consists of three modules; towards a better understanding of gay men and MSM, discussing sexual history and testing for STIs, and issues facing this population group. As an incentive for GPs to participate, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners’ Continuing Professional Development points are allocated to those who complete the training.
Conclusion The Gay Friendly GP OLM is Australia’s first online training that promotes optimal care for MSM in general practice settings. Responding to the needs of key populations in general practice can help bridge the gap between health professionals and the populations they serve. This training package will assist GPs to improve consumer engagement, understand sexual diversity and promote effective screening and treatment of STIs in gay men and MSM.
Disclosure of interest statement Nil.
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