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Chlamydia and the Urban Aboriginal Medical Service

Chlamydia and the Urban Aboriginal Medical Service

Despite the high proportion of young people annually accessing general practices, including Aboriginal Medical Services (AMS), testing for Chlamydia trachomatis remains relatively low in urban areas. A project officer was employed within the Institute of Urban Indigenous Health (IUIH) to serve a mentoring and facilitation role for the SE Queensland network of AMS and their sexual health workers, with a view to improving testing, management and follow-up of chlamydia and other STIs by community controlled medical services.

The officer has been operational for three years, conducting weekly visits to AMS within the IUIH network, identifying obstacles to routine Chlamydia screening within clinics, collecting and analysing test data and promoting greater uptake of testing amongst clinicians and health workers.

A number of impediments to Chlamydia testing was identified including reluctance by clinicians, low prioritization, poor collection and analysis of test data, poor communication between clinicians and health workers, and variable interpretations of the Adult Health Check MBS Item 715. Two key initiatives by the IUIH, the standardization of the Adult Health Check, and the implementation of standard medical data collection software (MMeX) allowing for the easy collection, analysis and reporting of test data, appear to have had a positive impact on chlamydia testing rates.

The ability to routinely report back to clinicians and health workers the results of their testing and to benchmark those results with previous efforts provides a continuous quality improvement cycle that facilitates communication and awareness between clinicians and health workers.

Speakers: Condy Canuto
Conference: AIDS 2013, HIV

AIDS 2015

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