NHS Bedfordshire achieves its chlamydia screening target

Latest data has confirmed that NHS Bedfordshire has become one of only two Primary Care Trusts in the region to achieve the national Chlamydia screening target of 35% - testing 17,950 young people aged 15-24.


Chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the UK, affecting approximately one in 14 young people. It is called the ‘silent infection’, as often there can be no signs or symptoms. Left untreated, it can affect fertility in both males and females.     


Throughout the year NHS Bedfordshire’s Chlamydia Screening Team has been visiting schools, colleges and even night clubs to explain the risks of chlamydia and to offer young people the simple ‘pee-in-the-pot’ screening test to help prevent the spread of the infection. Young people have also been ordering chlamydia home testing kits from the PCT’s sexual health website , Judy Benns, Chlamydia Screening Co-ordinator for NHS Bedfordshire, said: “We are extremely pleased to have successfully met this challenging target.


"This achievement is down to the hard work of our Chlamydia Screening Team, GPs, and all local partners delivering sexual health services, but of course it would not have been possible had it not been for the young people themselves coming forward to be screened.


"We hope that having been screened, these young people will know how easy it is to do and so will continue to screen in the future as part of looking after their health.”


The success of this year’s screening has also been boosted by a promotional campaign devised by a group of MSc Project Management students from the University of Bedfordshire, who worked closely with the Chlamydia Screening Team.


The students created an innovative postcard design to encourage 15-24 year-olds to get screened at one of a range of places across the county. It was based on the iconic London Underground map, with decision points relating to young people instead of stations.

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