The ADHB's Alex Pimm Gay and bisexual men, transgender people and those living with HIV are being reassured that proposed specialist staff cuts at the Auckland region's sexual health clinics will not affect their direct access to sexual health services. The region's clinics, whose users include a large proportion of men who have sex with men, transgender people and people living with HIV, may see a 20% drop in the availability of specialist staff under a plan currently being circulated for comment. If adopted the change will affect sexual health clinics in Greenlane, Glenfield, Henderson and Manukau. It comes a year after the clinics 'model of care' was changed to place more emphasis on clients being attended to by more specialist nurse practitioners in line with increasing specialisation of nursing staff. The number of sexual health specialists attached to the clinics will be dropped from 6.5 full time equivalents to 5.2, and this is in line with a drop in the need for those staff experienced since the model of care changes were instituted a year ago, says Alex Pimm, the ADHB's General Manager, Community and Long Term Conditions Directorate. "It's been agreed that a group of priority populations, including men who have sex with men, people living with HIV and transgender people will continue to be seen by our staff through self-referrals," he says. "All others are seen on referral by a GP." He says accurate numbers of gay and bi me using the service are unavailable "As some people fall into multiple reporting categories." But it is believed "a large proportion" of the overall number of people using the service, which sees around 1,500 appointments a month, are men who have sex with men or transgender.
Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff
First published: Thursday, 1st December 2016 - 12:04am
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