A sexual health and HIV strategy for England

BMJ 2001; 323 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.323.7307.243 (Published 04 August 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;323:243

This ambitious strategy could, if properly resourced, greatly improve sexual health

  1. George Kinghorn, consultant physician in genitourinary medicine
  1. Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield S10 2JF

    News p 250

    The Department of Health last month produced a comprehensive framework for England for preventing the sexual causes of premature death and ill health.1 The key objectives of the strategy are to ensure that all individuals have access to the knowledge and skills necessary to achieve positive sexual health and that services should be readily available to all who require them. The specific aims are to reduce the undiagnosed prevalence and transmission of sexually transmitted infections and HIV, to reduce unintended pregnancies, and to improve social and health care for people with HIV. The proposals will increase the role of primary care and strengthen links between specialist services and other local agencies. The strategy is comprehensive—but it looks overambitious for the resources allocated to it.

    Main recommendations

    • Prevention

      New public education campaign from 2002

      Targeted local prevention campaigns

      More responsive national helplines

      Development of evidence base for sexual health promotion

    • Standards and targets

      National standards for sexual health services

      Development of care pathways

      HIV testing to be encouraged

      Targets to reduce incidence of HIV and gonorrhoea by 2007

    • Services

      Widened role for primary care

      Closer working between primary and secondary care

      Improved access to genitourinary medicine services

      Increased community role for sexual health advisers

      Managed clinical networks for HIV and other services

      Targeted chlamydia screening to begin …

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