Objective: To compare the demographics and risk factors of men who utilise the services of a municipal public sexually transmitted disease (STD) clinic with those who utilise the services provided by a non-public men’s STD clinic operated by a not for profit primary care clinic.
Methods: A record based review of the characteristics and STD prevalence of men who visited a non-public STD clinic in Baltimore, Maryland, compared with those of a random sample of male attendees of a public STD clinic. Data abstracted from the records included information on age, race/ethnicity, self reported risk behaviours, and STD tests and results. We used χ2 analysis as well as bivariate and multivariate modelling to compare differences in categorical factors between clinics groups.
Results: Men who utilised the services at the non-public STD clinic were more often white (71% v 3%, p<0.001), MSM (65% v 2%, p<0.001), and presented for general screening (52% v 15%, p<0.001) compared to those at the public clinic. In addition, they more frequently reported ⩾3 partners (22% v 11%, p = 0.005), and having an HIV positive partner (10% v 3%, p = 0.005). Factors independently associated with attendance at non-public clinic in multivariate analysis were general screening as reason for visit (OR = 11.0, p<0.001), having 3+ partners in past month (OR = 10.5, p = 0.002), and “sometimes” using condoms (OR = 3.6, p = 0.033).
Conclusions: Non-public STD clinics can reach a distinct segment of the male population with high risk sexual behaviours that might not attend public STD clinics.
- MSM, men who have sex with men
- NGU, non-gonococcal urethritis
- STD, sexually transmitted diseases
- sexually transmitted diseases
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