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Screening methods for Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae infections in sexually transmitted infection clinics: what do patients prefer?
  1. Elizabeth J Howard1,
  2. Fujie Xu2,
  3. Stephanie N Taylor1,
  4. Bradley P Stoner3,4,
  5. Leandro Mena5,
  6. M Jacques Nsuami1,
  7. Suzanne Powell2,
  8. Rebecca Lillis1,
  9. David H Martin1
  1. 1School of Medicine, Section of Infectious Diseases, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
  2. 2Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of STD Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  3. 3Department of Anthropology, Washington University, St Louis, Missouri, USA
  4. 4Department of Internal Medicine, Washington University, St Louis, Missouri, USA
  5. 5University of Mississippi Medical Center, Crossroads Clinics, Mississippi State Department of Health, Jackson, Mississippi, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Fujie Xu, 1600 Clifton Road, MS E-02, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA; fax1{at}


Objectives To meet the need for services at sexually transmitted infection (STI) clinics, self-obtained vaginal (SOV) swabs or first-catch urine (FCU) samples collected at a clinic visit have been proposed as an alternative approach for Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) and Neisseria gonorrhoeae (GC) screening. The purpose of this clinic-based survey was to determine if non-invasive clinic-based SOV swabs and FCU samples for CT and GC screening are acceptable replacements for a traditional provider visit.

Methods Patients seen at STI clinics in three US cities completed a self-administered survey of preferences for methods of CT and GC screening under hypothetical circumstances.

Results A total of 2887 participants completed a self-administered questionnaire that contained multiple-choice questions about their preference. If there was a hypothetical long clinic wait, 58% of the survey participants preferred to wait to see a doctor. If the clinic had to turn patients away, 41% of patients preferred to come back the next business day and 46% preferred to self-collect a sample. The percentages were similar across site, demographic and clinical groups.

Conclusions Clinic-based self-collected specimens for CT and GC screening were not preferred by most patients who participated in this survey. The findings indicate that more detailed information about self-collection practices must be provided for patients to adopt this new approach.

  • Chlamydia trachomatis
  • gonorrhoea
  • patients' views
  • preferences
  • screening
  • self-collection
  • STD

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  • Funding This study was funded in part by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Louisiana State University, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, Washington University, St Louis, Missouri, USA and the University of Mississippi, Jackson, Mississippi, USA.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.