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Recreational drug use among men who have sex with men: Public Health England's response to an STI outbreak
  1. Oluwakemi Olufon,
  2. Simon Cathcart
  1. Health Protection Team, Public Health England, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Oluwakemi Olufon, Health Protection Team, Public Health England, London, EC4Y 8JX UK; oluwakemi.olufon{at}

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Public Health England's (PHE) recent report described transmission of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among men who have sex with men (MSM) despite evidence of access and engagement with services.1 In 2014, a London Health Protection Team (HPT) was notified of 40 men linked to a single residence, all newly infected with HIV and other STIs. Investigation revealed high levels of drug use such as crystal methamphetamine—a known ‘chemsex drug’. Chemsex is sex that occurs while using recreational drugs, frequently unprotected and high risk in nature.1

As part of a service improvement, …

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  • Contributors All authors have been involved in the undertaking and completion of the work, and in the final writing and agreement of the letter. OO: nurse specialist involved with outbreak response, writing, editing and revising manuscript. SC: lead consultant involved with outbreak response and writing and revising final manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

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