Services

Sexual Health

What To Expect


Step 1 - Before you arrive

You are able to book appointments in advance at some clinics, please phone the contact centre to make an appointment. Alternatively if you would prefer to attend one of our ‘queue and wait’ clinics.

You can ask your partner or a friend to come along with you, or go by yourself - whatever you’re most comfortable with.

*MEN ONLY* Please try to avoid passing urine for at least one hour before going to the clinic as you might need to provide a urine sample.


Step 2 - When you arrive

  1. Go to reception.
  2. You will be asked to complete a registration form which will require your name and contact details. The form will also ask why are you attending clinic - this allows us to make sure that you are seen by the most appropriate clinician.
  3. We will also ask if you are happy for us to view your GP records and if you would like us to share the information with your GP relating to your care.  
  4. You can choose to stay anonymous if you want.
  5. The clinician won’t routinely tell  anyone about your visit, even if you’re under 16. There may be times when confidentiality cannot be kept if they think you or  someone else are at significant risk of harm. They will discuss this with you.
  6. You may be able to see either a female or a male doctor. You can ask if this is possible at the time of making your appointment.
  7. We will use the mobile number you give us to send texts informing you of any results which are positive and may require treatment, this text will name the infection and how you can access treatment and care.  We will also use it to send appointment reminders and ask for your feedback.
  8. We have a few private rooms that can be used whilst you are waiting to be seen.

Step 3 - Types of questions asked

We routinely start off chatting to you by yourself  to make sure you have privacy during the time you are seeing the doctor or nurse. We can then ask your relative or friend to join if this is what you would like. The doctor or nurse that you see will ask you some questions about why you have come to see us.

You will be asked some questions about your sexual activity, experiences and symptoms. Please answer as honestly as you can, as we need to ask these to make sure you are offered all the tests that you need and what treatment to offer you. Here are some examples of what you might be asked:

  • When was the last time you had sex? For example, the type of sex (oral, vaginal, anal) and if contraception was used.
  • When did you last have sex with someone else?
  • Have you ever had sex with someone outside the UK?

Our staff are very experienced and provide a confidential, professional and non-judgemental service. You may be asked some questions about things that aren’t relevant to you, such as drug and alcohol use, types of sex or whether you were paid/have paid for sex. All patients are asked these questions to make sure that they have the opportunity to talk about them if they do apply.


Step 4 - Getting tested

There are several ways to test for an STI, depending on your symptoms and the type of sexual contact you’ve had. On some cases you may be able to take the test yourself. The routine tests we offer are for Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, HIV and Syphilis. Women may also have tests for Thrush, Bacterial Vaginosis and Trichomonas Vaginalis. If you are thought to be at risk, you will also be offered Hepatitis B and C testing.

  • Urine and/or blood sample
  • Swabs -  taken from your genitals, throat or rectum.
  • Taking a look – usually at your genitals. If you haven’t had any symptoms, you don’t usually need to be examined. If you are examined you will be offered a chaperone (somebody else in the room as well as the doctor or nurse).

Some infections have an incubation period, where you can be infected but they will not be found on testing. For this reason you may be offered repeat tests in the future.


Step 5 - Getting your results

When you get tested, the doctor or nurse will explain when and how you’ll get the results. You may have to attend clinic again to get them, or you may be able to receive them by phone or text.

Some STIs can be diagnosed there and then (e.g. genital warts). Some  results may be available during your visit if you attend Howard House (Bradford), Princess Royal Health Centre (Huddersfield) or Dewsbury Health Centre. If you agree that it’s ok to  receive text messages, you will get a text with your results.

 

Negative results (no STI was detected when you were tested)

If your results are negative (all clear)we will send a text, to the mobile number on your records, informing you of this. Even if your final tests are negative, think about how you will protect yourself in the future.

 

Positive Results (you do have a STI)

A positive result is not the end of the world. Almost all STIs can now be cured or managed effectively, including HIV. Your nurse or doctor will give you all the information and advice you need about getting the right treatment. Some STIs can be treated immediately without waiting for the test results and for some a further test may be required to check the treatment has worked. If you need treatment from us you will be contacted and asked to return. You do not have to pay for any treatment you get from us. You may also be offered counselling and other forms of support to help you cope with having an STI.

The next thing to consider is how to inform any partners who may be affected by your diagnosis.


Step 6 - Partner Notification

If you are diagnosed with an infection, treating your current partner(s) can help to protect you from catching infection again. Treating your ex-partners may not only prevent them from having serious health problems but also stop the infection being passed on to others. Informing partners of their risk of an STI is a sensitive issue and you don’t have to do this yourself. Our health advisors can help you with this task. They can contact your partner(s) and inform them that they may be at risk of the STI you have been diagnosed with, without naming you. To do this, the health advisors will ask you for your partner's or partners' name(s), age(s), and contact details (preferably mobile number). Your name won’t be mentioned and even if they go to the same clinic as you, no-one will give them any information about you.


What happens in the queue and wait clinic?

This is a very popular service and so it can be very busy! Be prepared to wait.

Sitting in the waiting room,  it may feel like people are not seen in order of arrival. There are different reasons for this:

  • We have several clinics running, all seeing different people

  • Some people are attending for results or reviews and do not require tests

  • Some people are waiting to see the doctor within the department

  • Some people may require tests before being called for their clinical examination

  • Sometimes there are emergencies that require urgent appointments

We try to give each patient as long as they need – PLEASE BE PATIENT.

 

Unfortunately, occasionally- usually because it is so busy and wait times become too long-  we may have to close the clinic for non-urgent cases and ask people to return for an appointment or to another queue and wait clinic. We apologise for any inconvenience.

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