Understanding patient choices for attending sexually transmitted infection testing services: a qualitative study

Llewellyn, Carrie, Pollard, Alex, Miners, Alec, Richardson, Daniel, Fisher, Martin, Cairns, John and Smith, Helen (2012) Understanding patient choices for attending sexually transmitted infection testing services: a qualitative study. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 88 (7). pp. 504-509. ISSN 1368-4973

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Objectives: To establish which aspects of sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing services are important to STI testing service users.

Methods: 10 focus groups consisting of previous or existing users of STI testing services were conducted in community settings in the south east of England. Groups were quota sampled based on age, gender and sexual orientation. Data were analysed using Framework Analysis.

Results: 65 respondents (58% men) participated. Perceived expertise of staff was the key reason for attendance at genitourinary medicine services rather than general practice. Although some respondents voiced a willingness to test for STIs within general practice, the apparent limited range of tests available in general practice and the perceived lack of expertise around sexual health appeared to discourage attendance at general practice. The decision of where to test for STIs was also influenced by past experience of testing, existing relationships with general practice, method of receiving test results and whether the patient had other medical conditions such as HIV.

Conclusions: No one type of STI testing service is suitable for all patients. This is recognised by policymakers, and it now requires commissioners and providers to make services outside of genitourinary medicine clinics more acceptable and attractive to patients, in particular to address the perceived lack of expertise and limited range of STIs tests available at alternative testing sites.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Online First Article
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Primary Care and Public Health
Subjects: R Medicine
Depositing User: Jessica Stockdale
Date Deposited: 16 Aug 2012 09:12
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2019 01:48
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/40402

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