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Independents' Day

Most patients prefer one-stop shops for sexual healthcare

A study comparing one-stop shop models with traditional sexual healthcare has found that most groups of patients prefer integrated care, regardless of the model used.

The authors conducted focus groups and semi-structured interviews with 122 men and women from different community groups, including young heterosexual men, men who have sex with men and minority ethnic groups. The study evaluated the acceptability of three one-stop shop models of sexual health provision: a young people's service, a service for all ages, and a service in general practice.

The concept of a one-stop shop was acceptable to all demographic groups except men who have sex with men, who did not want to wait with families, women and children.

Young men, men who have sex with men and Black Africans all had concerns about confidentiality in general practice. However, the majority of South Asian participants reported that they would prefer to attend general practice, and were concerned about the stigma associated with GUM clinics.

Traditionally, GUM and contraceptive services have been provided separately. Many contraceptive services now provide some basic

STI testing and treatment; primary care teams with necessary skills can also provide some GUM and contraceptive services.

Although different demographic groups prefer different models of sexual healthcare provision, this study has found that most groups prefer that one provider delivers integrated sexual healthcare.

Griffiths C, Gerressu M, French RS. Are one-stop shops acceptable? Community perspectives on one-stop shop models of sexual health service provision in the UK. Sex Transm Inf 2008;84:395-9


Dr Richard Ma
GP principal, North London and staff grade in sexual and reproductive health, Margaret Pyke Centre, London

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