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Give your views on sexual health services

The second phase of a consultation asking residents about sexual health services in Wigan Borough has launched.

Back in December, residents were asked how and where they accessed support as part of a review into sexual health services. There were 314 responses, the majority of which (73.1 per cent) were from females.

The first phase gave respondents the chance to have their say on things like where they get their contraception and whether they would like to get such services in different places to make accessing help and support easier.

The majority of those asked agreed that:

  • One organisation should be responsible for coordinating care (90.2 per cent)
  • Staff should focus on encouraging prevention (88.5 per cent)
  • More services should be available online and self-sampling kits should be available to be undertaken at home (88.7 per cent)
  • More services should be located near to where people live (88.7 per cent)
  • There should be one point of contact with one phone number and one website (86.3 per cent)

The second phase now asks residents to have their say on more detailed proposals, including whether they would like to access contraception in pharmacies and sexual health advice in their local community including schools.

It will include nurse-led clinics at GP surgeries in areas that have the most challenging sexual health needs and retaining the consultant led walk-in centres in Wigan and Leigh.

A key aim of the new service is to address current sexual health challenges which see some communities more affected by sexual transmitted infections.

As part of The Deal for the Future, launched last year, Wigan Council is looking to transform services to make them the best they can be through working with communities, in particular schools and GP’s to make things like contraception and STI testing more readily available. This is all while falling under reducing budgets for services like public health.

The new service will look to offer better support with more ways to get help by teaming up with other services already available in communities.

Councillor Keith Cunliffe, portfolio holder for adult social care and health, said: “We want to hear from people about how they use sexual health services or what could be done to encourage more people to engage with services. This consultation will help to shape how a future sexual health service will look based on what people value and how we can make it easier to get support.

“By opening up access like this we hope it will help to address the inequalities we see in different communities and we want to help people make the best choice on sexual health for them.”

Dianne Draper, sexual health lead at Public Health England North West, added: “It is important that as many people as possible have their say on local services and we would encourage residents, clients and other stakeholders to take this opportunity to respond to the next stage of consultation.”

Once the consultation is complete people will then have the chance to have their say on the proposal for the service.

View the consultation online, the closing date for submissions is Wednesday 19th April 2017.

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