Sexual Health Service - Proposal for Service Change
- Meeting of Policy and Performance - Families and Wellbeing Committee, Monday, 2nd February 2015 6.00 p.m. (Item 40.)
The Committee considered the report of the Wirral Community Trust informing of the consultation on the proposed change to the service delivery for the sexual health service.
Mr Neil Perris, Divisional Manager, Lifestyle Services, and Ms Toni Gleave, Service Lead, Sexual Health Wirral, Wirral Community Trust introduced the report which highlighted the rationale for the clinical review indicating that the service had identified a number of issues at Birkenhead Medical Building (BMB) and Moreton which had a detrimental impact on patient experience and the quality of the service offered. These issues related to room availability, IT connectivity, the set up and take down of clinics, waiting room, levels of patient activity and the clinic environment. These were detailed in appendix A to the report.
The report concluded by setting out the recommendations for the proposed changes.
Mr Perris indicated that as high percentages of patients indicated that they attended Moreton and BMB based on day/time of operating, it was recommended that both BMB and Moreton clinic services be transferred to alternative venues within Sexual Health Wirral (SHW) in April 2015. To ensure clinic capacity was not reduced in the overall timetable a clinic within St Catherine’s Health Centre would be initiated on a Wednesday evening. Opening hours of the Arrowe Park clinic which took place every Friday would also be extended. Both venues offered higher quality facilities including facilities to conduct cryotherapy and microscopy which were not available in spoke clinics.
It was reported that proposing closures in April 2015 allowed a period of patient engagement to take place to ensure that regular users of both clinics were aware of all planned changes. This would also allow for a comprehensive communication and marketing strategy to be put in place making use of media and social media to communicate with the local community and local stakeholders.
Both changes would be implemented concurrently moderating any upheaval to service users. The SHW timetable would be subject to one change and then circulated widely to all local stakeholders (including GPs, Children’s Centres, pharmacies, local colleges, school nurses etc). Information would be placed in the GP bulletin and be placed on Staffzone (Wirral Community Trust intranet).
It was reported that the website would remain fully updated along with Facebook pages and Twitter account. Adverts and information in local newspapers would also be utilised.
Staff currently working in these clinics would be relocated to other clinics within SHW with a focus on particularly busy clinics which would reduce patient waiting times and improve the patient experience.
Increases to the outreach element of the service would continue and staff from Livewell would continue to be trained to ensure that patients were offered sexual health information and some limited interventions during one to one consultations and outreach events, particularly with hard to reach groups.
In response to a member, Ms Gleave indicated that research had shown that there had been an increase in the number of patients 40-46 year age bracket presented with an STI over the past few years. Under the new arrangements, patients would be seen in a much more appropriate environment for e.g. GP surgeries and separate waiting areas.
(1) the report be noted; and
(2) Mr Perris and Ms Gleave be thanked for their informative report and presentation.