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Practices are failing to screen and diagnose chlamydia in young men, a UK study suggests. Researchers said improved training was required to iron out inequalities in testing.

They called for better funding of sexual health in general practice and greater availability of urine tests for chlamydia.

More than half of 46 practice nurses surveyed at 22 general practices had never tested male patients for chlamydia infection. Some 91 per cent of nurses did not examine male genitalia and 85 per cent did not regard contact tracing as part of their role.

Study author Dr Olwen Williams, consultant in genitourinary medicine in Wrexham, said practice nurses were more confident examining female patients because of their experience with smear tests.

But he added that the discrepancy was leading to inequality.

'Practice nurses did not have the time and they were not adequately trained. They would possibly do this if they had training and funding,' Dr Williams said.

The study was published in Sexually Transmitted Infections (February).

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