Medical Testing Of STD
Accessibility to UK medical testing is important for all low-income groups and vulnerable users.
This is particularly the case for a subject as complicated and severe as sexual health.
It is important that every sexually active individual receives frequent STD testing and guidance, especially if they suspect there is a problem. Unchecked diseases can be damaging and infectious.
Thankfully, UK services are here to offer quick, confidential tests in a range of facilities.
STD Testing In The UK Is Free, Accessible And Simple
The first thing to remember about all GUM clinic medical testing and consultations is that they are completely free.
This is service is designed to be accessible to anyone no matter their background so that everyone has access to the right options.
This means that anyone can make an appointment, or perhaps attend a drop-in clinic, and carry out the simple procedure. They also get to discuss the results and get some free sex education at the same time.
GUM and STI clinics are the best places to go because they specialize in these treatments and understand the concerns of visitors, especially younger visitors that may be unsure about sexual health.
GPs can also provide the service, but they may have less experience and be too familiar with the patient for testing to be comfortable. Contraception and family planning centers may also be able to help if there isn’t a GUM clinic that is accessible.
The nurses will ask visitors questions about their sexual history and the reason for the visit before taking the appropriate samples and examining the area.
Concerns Over Confidentiality And Privacy In STD Testing
One of the problems with medical testing in GUM centers is that they can be embarrassing for patients.
The nature of some STDs means that this is a worrying time and a very personal, private situation. Not all patients want to share information with a nurse, and none want to have their genitals examined.
The good news is that there are strict confidentiality clauses in these clinics. Nurses don’t have to share information with GPs, and they don’t even have to inform parents if a patient is under 16.
Patients that don’t want to go through this experience may prefer the self-testing method. These kits are available at high street pharmacies, via the NHS and online. The pharmacist route may be best as it allows for extra guidance on how to use the kit.
These kits are not always free, but they are still an affordable option for those wanting a greater sense of control.
One exception is the free chlamydia kit for the under 25s which can be posted out via the NHS. The kits can then be used in the comfort and privacy of a user’s home.
A positive or inconclusive result is a sign that users need professional advice and should contact a doctor or GUM clinic.
STD Testing In The UK Doesn’t Have To Be Scary.
There are many different routes that users can take to test themselves for common STDs. GUM clinics may be preferable regarding the professional treatment and confidentiality, but self-testing is a starting point. All sexually-active individuals should feel comfortable enough to use these services confidentially for medical testing, feedback, and advice.