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Psychology

Research project: Sexual health service provisioning

Currently Active: 
Yes

Sexual health service provisioning encompasses pregnancy planning, pregnancy choices, abortion, prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), as well as sexual wellbeing and health promotion. Within the UK, as well as other parts of the world, there is considerable variation in how sexual health services are provided. These vary from distinctly separate general practice and community-based contraceptive provision with hospital-based abortion and genitourinary medicine services, to fully integrated sexual health services in the community.

Past and present projects looking at sexual health service provisioning and needs assessment:

The provisioning of sexual health services 

  • to Asian women 
  • to seasonal workers
  • to looked after young people
  • in prison settings 
  • in outreach settings

Young people's sex advice services; delays, triggers and contraceptive use

Much research has examined the prevalence of contraceptive use amongst young people, however, little is still know regarding the decisions young people undertake whether to use or not use available services. It remains unclear if young people delay attending services for extensive periods of time after becoming sexually active do so out of a lack of knowledge regarding the availability of services (prior to the decision phase is the issue of awareness), simple anxiety about visiting a provider or are in fact practising safe contraception and thus do not feel the need to see a provider.

With younger individuals experiencing problems obtaining contraception, encouraging greater and earlier use of specialist sexual health services should lead to an increase in the effective use of contraception and hence a marked health gain.

Funding - Department of Health

Related research groups

Centre for Clinical and Community Applications of Health Psychology (CCCAHP)
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