Background Commissioners requested STI screening for MSMs attending male-only saunas in an effort to reduce HIV late diagnosis and engage hard-to-reach clients. Similar schemes have been successfully described elsewhere.
Aim Examine success of sexual health screening (SHS) and health promotion for ‘high risk’ MSM in saunas. We examined infection rate and proportion of individuals who were not accessing services elsewhere.
Methods Two saunas were visited monthly over 16 months by senior nursing staff. All attendees were offered a full SHS (HIV, STS, Hep B, GC, CT) and safer sex advice. Symptomatic individuals were signposted to main GUM clinic. We collected demographics and data on previous clinic attendance.
Results Results are outlined in Table 1. One symptomatic patient was signposted to the GUM clinic. Health promotion was provided to all.
Discussion 64 hours of staff time were used (total cost £2,632 – not including lab costs). Small numbers were seen, with an overall 10% positivity rate for STIs and no new HIV diagnoses. Many regular attendees declined repeat screening as they perceived themselves to be at low risk. We concluded that supplying condoms/lubrication and prominently displaying health promotion literature was a more effective way of engaging with this group in terms of both time & cost.
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