Dr Cris Quitral from Hey Fella explains how STI testing online works and how you can do it.
With the pandemic and lockdowns easing, the world has reconnected in many wonderful ways… including in the bedroom.
With that reconnection, there has been a spike in the cases of Sexually Transmitted Infections or STIs as most of us know them by.
The problem with STIs (apart from the obvious) is that almost half of them are asymptomatic. This means you may have one but not even be aware of it.
This is why regular testing is so important, not just when you have sudden symptoms.
The good news is that these days, there are more options to go through the testing process, including online.
Hearing that most of the STI process can be done entirely online might be a surprise and you may wonder how it works.
At our service Hey Fella, we have an easy-to-follow three to four-step process.
1. Provide your details
Complete our online process and provide your details. A Hey Fella doctor then reviews this.
2. Receive a digital pathology request
You receive an instant pathology referral form which you can take to any pathology collection centre to get tested.
3. Receive your results
Your Hey Fella doctor reviews your results, which are usually received within 24-48 hours, and makes these available via our online health portal. If you require treatment for a STI your doctor will indicate this and get in contact to discuss management.
4. Get treated with eScript
If you do require treatment for an STI your Hey Fella doctor will issue you an eScript for treatment.
Some important parts of this process must be considered for gay men.
Many other providers will not request that oral or rectal tests be taken. This may be because a patient doesn’t feel comfortable sharing details with their doctor or it might just get missed.
At Hey Fella, we are LGBTA doctors, so you can feel comfortable telling us anything and everything. And trust us… our patients do, which we love!
It means we can provide the best possible service.
One service for those who may have experienced some risky behaviour is Doxy PEP. This is a new service that has recently been approved due to the spike in STIs.
If taken within three days after sex, it sees a significant reduction in syphilis (by 70–80%) and chlamydia (by 70–90%), and to a lesser degree, gonorrhea (ineffective in some trials, or 50–55% reduction in other trials).
So whether you’re doing your regular STI testing or you have a certain feeling you need to get checked out, come check us out at Hey Fella.
For more information on online STI testing and Doxy PEP you can check out Hey Fella website.