Confidante® provides an alternative option for Sexual health Testing.
- The high street pharmacy is a friendly, welcoming environment which customers find easily accessible.
- It gives a more flexible approach to testing than traditional clinic opening hours & pre-booked appointment slots. Weekend & Evening opening is more accessible to young people.
- Discrete: No stigma attached to visiting a pharmacy in the same way as people would find visiting a GUM clinic, which can be embarrassing & degrading.
- The ease of buying & taking a test make it more appealing to a wider range of people, both with & without symptoms. May encourage better partner uptake of testing services.
- Non-invasive sampling procedure – more appealing to users than traditional swab techniques.
- The ease of the test will encourage asymptomatic people to take a test “Just to be safe” thus reducing spread of STIs by asymptomatic people.
- Increased testing of people with no symptoms will help stop spread of STI’s such as chlamydia, which often go undetected for years & pose a risk to health & fertility.
- Pharmacists can offer expert advice on STI’s to concerned patients quickly, discreetly & easily, putting people at ease and ensuring they get the help they need.
- Where needed, they can direct people to further testing available through NHS & on safe sexual practices.
Reinforces the pharmacy’s role in health promotion in the community & on the high street.
- Pharmacy can have a unique role in the community, with the ability to offer everything the patient needs to take control of their sexual health in a single visit: Contraception, e.g. Condoms & Birth control Pill, Emergency Hormonal Contraception (If available) Pregnancy Testing & Fertility aids such as Ovulation kits.
- Private treatment rooms in many pharmacies offer the ideal location for pharmacists to provide help & advice on safe sexual practices and how patients can best protect themselves against STI’s and unwanted pregnancies.
- Gives the pharmacy information on sexual health issues / concerns in the community, allowing them to increase their offerings in sexual health in accordance with local need.
- Will encourage younger patients who may not normally go to a pharmacist for advice (may rely on friends / internet) to come and speak about their health & get the help they need.
- NHS funding cuts have affected health services in many parts of the UK. With more services available in community pharmacies, the burden on NHS services is reduced.
Increases the pharmacy’s existing range of diagnostic services (BMI checks, Smoking Cessation programmes, Diabetes Clinics etc.)
- Larger diagnostic test offering will increase attendance at the pharmacy, increase business, and promote healthy living within the community.
- Patients may find it more convenient to visit the pharmacy than their GP for such services. Getting them through the door for one type of test can lead to future interest in other testing services offered, thus increasing business & the range of patients in the pharmacy.
- Diagnostic tests & specialist screening programmes will boost profits in the pharmacy, both through purchase of test kits and other purchase made by patients during their visit.
Increased profile in the community
- Increased interest in the pharmacy due to test offering.
- Increased traffic through pharmacy will lead to increased sales in other areas of the pharmacy, particularly in the Sexual health category, e.g. Contraceptives, Emergency Hormonal Contraception & Pregnancy testing.
- Better relationships with customers due to ability to offer expert advice on such a sensitive subject.
- May encourage further attendance at the pharmacy for other health-related issues.
- Customer Loyalty: Return visits / recommendations to friends.
- Low cost of the test means patients can test themselves regularly and take control of their sexual health. If the patient receives good service & advice in store, they will be encouraged to return next time.