Breckland Alliance Sexual Health Service
Patients living in Norfolk can now take advantage of a new pilot service in Thetford which is aimed at making it easier to check if they have any sexual health worries without having to travel to an out of town sexual health clinic, or see a doctor or nurse.
The Breckland Alliance Sexual Health Service pilot, which launched in June, is a service for people who do not have any symptoms or concerns, but who would like to take a sexual health test for peace of mind. Appointments are provided by Grove Surgery and School Lane Surgery and take place Monday to Friday at Thetford Healthy Living Centre. These appointments are accessible by phoning Grove Surgery (01842 752285) or School Lane Surgery (01842 753115).
This service is located in Thetford because of concerns raised by Public Health over the high numbers of patients aged over 45, who have been diagnosed with HIV, syphillis, gonorrhoea and chlamydia in the area.
Patients who request the service will be invited to a specialist clinic and given a pack with instructions to test for chlamydia and gonorrhoea. Blood tests for HIV and syphilis are also carried out at this time.
Patients will have an appointment with a trained healthcare assistant, who will explain the tests and how results are received and assist with blood samples. The patient will then be shown to a bathroom where they are asked to provide a swab and/or urine sample.
Negative results are usually sent to patients via text message within 7-10 days, and the text message will explain that all results are negative - meaning that no infection has been found.
Patients with positive results may need to be seen for further screening and treatment at the Norwich iCash service. This will be explained by the Healthcare professional.
A limited supply of testing kits has been provided for this pilot. Once these have been used, patients can still book appointments and receive help to access sexual health screening in Thetford without the need to travel to Norwich unnecessarily.