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All GPs in England will screen for chlamydia 'eventually'

The Government's chlamydia screening programme for England will eventually involve all GPs despite most of them being excluded from the first stage of the national rollout because of funding restrictions, the Department of Health has confirmed.

Last week the department published its core requirements for the eight sites due to start screening all sexually active women under 25 and some men by the end of the year. Two successful chlamydia screening pilots, involving GPs in Portsmouth and the Wirral on Merseyside, will continue.

The department has restricted funding to family planning clinics, genitourinary medicine clinics and gynaecology centres in the first phase of the rollout, angering many sexual health experts who argued chlamydia screening should be 'rooted' in primary care.

Last week's guidelines said GPs providing contraception, antenatal or young people's clinics could also be involved in the first phase of the rollout subject to agreement from the department. They could also be involved where there was 'particular local need'.

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