Background/introduction This sauna clinic was set up as recent HIV infection amongst MSM in our city is higher than the national average. Following a successful 6 month pilot, the clinic was commissioned for another year.
Provide accessible, convenient sexual healthcare/promotion for ‘hard-to-reach’ individuals.
Promote regular STI testing amongst this high-risk group.
Assess measurable outcomes to determine the service’s success.
Methods A weekly nurse-led clinic was set up at the sauna. Rectal, pharyngeal and urine testing for chlamydia and gonorrhoea were offered, with HIV, hepatitis B/C and syphilis testing and Hepatitis B vaccination. Identified infections were treated at the sauna clinic or our GUM clinic.
Results 231 new/rebook episodes over 57 clinics. 80% had previously accessed sexual health services but only 63% had previously undergone extra-genital sampling. HIV testing uptake was 96%. 16% had never tested for HIV; 22% last tested over a year ago. 20% reported sex with men and women. 18% had at least one of chlamydia, gonorrhoea, HIV or syphilis identified, compared with 14% amongst asymptomatic MSM attending our GUM clinic. 80% of chlamydia and gonorrhoea infections identified were purely extra-genital. 6 new HIV diagnoses were made, 4 of which were recently acquired HIV. HIV prevalence was 3%.
Discussion/conclusion The service has been continually modified to optimise attendance. A new initiative introduced by the sauna management team includes discounted sauna entry for clients attending the sauna clinic. This clinic’s success has been due to close partnership and collaboration between NHS, third sector, private sector and local commissioners.
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