Doctors in England have stated that the proposed Government plan to reduce the waiting time for sex health clinics to 48 hours cannot be achieved without a substantial expansion of the existing capacity. In addition, an improvement in the health care facilities has also to be undertaken.
Voices have also been raised, requesting the local health officials to invest the extra money funded by the Government to restrict the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. Dr. Helen Ward, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Imperial College, London has highlighted the need for more number of nurses and other para-medical staff.
Currently, as little as 50% of the cases are able to get an appointment with a sex health clinic within 48 hours of initial contact. Lack of proper access to services related to sexual health has been accounted for an alarming increase in the number of sexually transmitted infections.
Most of the money allocated by the Government is consumed by the primary health care trusts that are facing severe financial deficit. Therefore, a very small proportion of the funds reach the sexual health clinics. In response to the above situation, the Government has now announced that sex health clinics would be considered one among the top six priorities of the NHS. The primary health care trust has also been requested to give sexual health, the importance it long deserves.
If the target of reducing the sexual health clinic appointment time by 48 hours were to be met, the clinics would have to handle nearly 626 appointments every week, which is thrice as much as the existing capacity of 181 appointments.
The health officials are hopeful that the clinics would be able to achieve the objective following the financial kick-start, due this April.