HIV in primary care
A key priority of HPE is to reduce late diagnosis by increasing HIV prevention and testing among GPs and other primary care providers. To achieve this, in August 2018 we launched our GP Engagement Strategy [PDF].
The average adult visits their GP at least three times a year (The King’s Fund, 2016). In contrast, the latest national survey of sexual attitudes and lifestyles (Natsal-3, Tanton et al, 2018) found that:
- As few as 4.9% of sexually active adults attended a sexual health clinic (SHC) in the last year.
- More than 80% of those who reported having condomless sex had not attended a SHC in the last year.
- 65% of men and 77% of women who had never been to a SHC were more likely to seek treatment from their GP instead.
Despite the challenges associated with delivering HIV testing and prevention interventions in primary care, GP-based HIV testing and prevention is essential for many reasons, not least that late diagnoses rates remain high. National guidelines also strongly recommend increased GP testing in areas of high and very high prevalence of diagnosed HIV.
HPE will provide significant opportunities to support GPs and primary care practitioners, through National HIV Testing Week, providing free patient resources, information briefings for professionals, and providing sector development training events.
Download the briefing
HPE provides resources and training. If you work in primary care:
- Take advantage of our free patient resources.
- Sign-up to our monthly newsletter to keep up to date with our latest news and events (complete the form opposite or bottom of the page).
In October 2018, we worked in partnership with Sexual Health in Practice Community Interest Company (SHIP CIC) and IWantPrEPNow to deliver an introduction to PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) to GPs and primary care professionals at two seminars in London and Manchester.
The seminar aimed to:
- Outline the impact of combination prevention measures on new HIV diagnoses rates.
- Appreciate the personal perspective and barriers to obtaining PrEP.
- Identify who may benefit from PrEP by performing a rapid sexual health risk assessment tailored for the general practice setting.
- Discuss the evidence and effectiveness of PrEP.
- Explain how to access PrEP and facilitate this where appropriate.
Download our introductory guide to PrEP
Resources and guidelines for GPs and primary care professionals
Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP):
- Sexually transmitted infections in primary care
- Sexual health in primary care online course
- Second joint multidisciplinary conference of BHIVA and RCGP: presentations (2016)
OptTEST by HiE project:
National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE):
- NICE Guidelines (December 2016) – HIV testing: increasing uptake among people who may have undiagnosed HIV
- NICE Quality Standard (September 2017) – HIV testing: encouraging uptake
Sexual Health In Practice (SHIP CIC) – GP peer-led sexual health training for primary care professionals: