The British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) has published updated standards for the management of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV.
- A new standard for people with clinically urgent need to be seen within four hours of first contacting the service, and a clinic waiting time of less than two hours for walk-ins.
- Responsibilities in relation to PrEP.
- A new standard for HIV testing of contacts of index cases of HIV.
- Responsibilities for effective partner notification.
- Responsibilities for engagement with all equality groups, in particular gender and sexual minorities.
The document contains nine individual standards covering access; clinical assessment; diagnostics; clinical management; information governance; clinical governance; appropriately trained staff; links to other services; and patient and public engagement.
The standards “reflect important developments in service design, diagnostics and clinical care and are aligned to NICE, PHE and BASHH standards and guidelines,” said lead author Dr Raj Patel. “Importantly they specify what the public can expect of the services they access.”
They are intended for use in all services commissioned by local authorities or the NHS, including those provided by the independent and third sectors. They are written with reference to the commissioning system in England, but their clinical recommendations are relevant for the whole of the UK.
The new standards are available online, and effectively replace the standards for the management of STIs published jointly by BASHH and MEDFASH in 2014.