February 20, 2013, by Fraser
Hard work pays off… Nottingham bags a 1st for its sexual health services
With a flurry of A grades, The University of Nottingham has topped a ranking of Russell Group universities for its sexual health services – beating out Oxford and Cambridge.
Nottingham was awarded an A for nine out of the 11 criteria in the DrEd Sexual Health Report Card, including for ease of access to the facilities, strong promotion on campus, availability of contraception, testing days and the information available online.
The University’s sexual health services faired less well in terms of its drop-in services and sexual assault service.
Denise Eaves, Health Promotion Adviser at the University, believes the ranking reflects the work Nottingham has put into its services. She said: “If it’s not right, students won’t access it and miss out on important health promotion information. So information and service provision has to be student focused – which is one reason the HealthyU hall roadshows are very successful, because we take services to students.”
The University runs a range of initiatives including HealthyU weeks focusing on sexual, mental, physical and emotional wellbeing, as well as sexual health MOT events and promotion of the c-card scheme which provides free condoms to 13-24 year olds.
The information for the ranking was gathered in three ways: extensive data captured through university representatives in an online questionnaire, secondary research and analysis on the sexual health services provided, and anonymous visits to the university health centres to check service levels, responses and recommendations for treatment.
Why are young people most at risk from Sexual Transmitted Infections?
Dr Jasper Mordhurst, clinical consultant at DrEd, said: “Roughly 10% of under 25s still carry chlamydia, and chlamydia remains the number one reason women can’t conceive in later life. Young people tend to change partners much more than other age groups, so transmission rates of STIs are much higher.
“The UK is blessed with phenomenally good sexual health services generally. The whole concept of freely available anonymous sexual health clinics is eyed jealously from countries such as France and Germany. However, despite all that, in the under 25 age group, sexual health issues remain critical.
“Testing and treatment services are only as good as the number of people they can reach out to. Universities are in a prime position to communicate, educate and encourage testing, and should focus on making sexual health services easy to access, multi-cultural and educational.”
The University of Nottingham’s sexual health service
For more information on the sexual health services provided at the University, visit the sex and relationships webpage.
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