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Sexual Health Screening

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Lakitu | 19:35 Fri 24th Oct 2008 | Body & Soul
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In recent times, the media has been encouraging the general public to take better care of their sexual health and that there is no (longer) any stigma attached to going for a full STD screening.

We had Anna Richardson on Channel 4 for the last few weeks promoting the importance of it, we have the embarrassing illnesses doctors promoting awareness and we have the advert (in Scotland anyway) where the couples are getting down to business with the name of 'their' STD written on their belt or knickers.

Well, their hard work paid off as I was visiting the nurse in my GP practive this afternoon and when we were done I asked her to book me in for a full sexual health screening and I am astounded at the response I received.

She tried to discourage me, starting off telling me that if I'm in a long term relationship that it's not necessary. I pointed out that I am not and even if I were, how could I possibly be sure that my partner had not picked something up from his previous partner or that he wasn't cheating on me unprotected at this very moment.

She then said "But you won't be wanting an HIV test, willl you?" I said that I would as I assumed that when I asked for a FULL screening that an HIV test would come under that umbrella. She told me that if I have an HIV or Hep B test then that will affect my chances of getting a mortgage as they will see my medical records and put me in the "at risk" bracket and I'll be less likely to be granted the mortgage.

How can this be? Surely mortgage companies are not dinosaurs still in the 80's? Surely they would see that I have been sensible enough to get tested and that a negative would stand me in good stead since I'm not dying anytime soon and leaving them with my debt?

Continued.

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How can our Government promote us lot taking care of ourselves and not infecting one another with all sorts yet condone this kind of attitude? Damned if we do and damned if we don't?

I'm well aware I can go to a GUM clinic anonymously, but why should I have to?
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Hiya long time no see x

Its always been the case that if you take a test for HIV then you must have put yourself at 'risk' therefore insurers and lenders see you as a potential risk due to your way of life.

Question Author
I told her to book me in regardless, Red, I'm just really shocked at the attitude by the 'professionals'.

Hi Weeal xx If the Mortgage Companies have that attitude then it's really out of date. I'm not sleeping with randoms every week, I have a 'normal' way of life but that doesn't mean I'm any less at risk than the next person who may sleep with randoms every week.

I'm quite angry about it to be honest.
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Question Author
I know, it's the attitude of everyone else that's irked me more than the nurse though, I have a mortgage, I don't need a mortgage but if I did, why the hell should we all be penalised for being sensible about it?

I wouldn't know where to start with changing that attitude though :(
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Question Author
LOL, true!

The chances are I am not HIV positive, but I'm damned for checking anyway.
Its only the HIV test that you get penalised for tho Red, not the routine checks. Its serious.

I would have the routine stuff but I would definitely not take an HIV test.
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Because you'll be penalised, weeal?
it just gives me the Boak the thought of it but yeah I wouldnt want to be uninsurable
Question Author
The thought of getting tested or HIV itself?
well its not just a standard test, so the thought of waiting for a result such as that would be horrendous
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i know its only blood, its the 'thought' of what theyre testing for, its not something that is a standard test, I would think people who believe they have put themselves particularly at risk would be more likely to do it, such as people who have anal sex or many partners
Question Author
I know what you're saying, Weeal, but if you're getting it done routinely then would it be that bad? I certainly have no concerns so I can't see my arse making buttons during the waiting for the results phase.

I realise it would be very stressfull if you got it done specifically knowing there was a real chance you're positive though.

I'd rather have a confirmed negative than a fairly sure guess.
well, I suppose there are dozens of serious things you can get tested for but dont.
HIV would not be one I would pick to get checked for.
Question Author
What if you were having sex with a new partner for the first time and the condom split and he told you he had never been tested, would you get tested then?
no, im not that way by nature, tho i worry about more trivial things

I would get routine health checks which are kinda standard but I dont go get checked for major stuff really - might be different if I had symptoms of something

What about becoming a Blood Donor? Don't they routinely do an HIV check on all blood taken there?

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