Sexual Health Week 2023 is being held between 13th & 19th February.
Our #5Trusts5Days feature will be going live on our social media channels over the course of this week - the aim of which is to raise awareness of the Sexual Health and GUM services available to you in your trust area. Click on the drop down menus below to find out more about services in your area.
The South Eastern Health and Social Care trust covers Ards, North Down, Down and Lisburn areas.
The main hospital bases are: Ards Community Hospital, Bangor Community Hospital, Downe Hospital, Downshire Hospital, Lagan Valley Hospital and the Ulster Hospital. Community bases are located in many local towns and villages from Moira in the West to Portaferry in the East and from Bangor in the North to Newcastle in the South.
If you are not sure which trust area you fall under click here for clarification.
The South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust Sexual Health Service is based at the Downe Hospital, Downpatrick, with additional clinics in Bangor and Lisburn.
You do not have to be referred by a doctor.
They provide free sexual health care and advice for all age groups, including testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections and genital conditions.
Urgent and non urgent appointments are available, and the service is strictly confidential.
Men should have held off passing urine for at least three hours before seeing the doctor or nurse.
How To Access The Service
Tel: (028) 4483 8133
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 9am to 5pm
Nurse Advice Line:
Tel: (028) 4483 8392
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 10am to 3pm
Friday 10am to 2pm
All appointments are made via our Downpatrick site.
A Receptionist will either give you an appointment or arrange for you to speak to a Nurse who will prioritise your case
Both of these numbers have a confidential answer machine, so in the event that you do not get an answer, leave your name and telephone number and they will get back to you
They use SMS texts to remind you of your next appointment and also to communicate negative results. It is therefore important that you give a current mobile phone number.
The Northern Trust covers four local council areas – Antrim and Newtownabbey, Causeway Coast and Glens, Mid and East Antrim and Mid Ulster.
Their Sexual Health Clinic provides free testing for all sexually transmitted infections, free sexual health advice, emergency contraception, pregnancy testing, Hepatitis A and B and HPV vaccinations for at risk individuals, HIV testing and access to Post Exposure Prophylaxis following sexual risk (PEPSE) and discussion and onward referral for those seeking PrEP (HIV prevention). We also provide information for victims of sexual assault.
PrEP (HIV prevention) is now available free on the NHS from Northern Trust Sexual Health Clinic (Coleraine, Ballymena and Magherafelt). If you like to access PrEP call 07384820826 or email SexualHealth@northerntrust.hscni.net.
The service is available Monday-Friday from 9:00am-5:00pm.
Please note the service is closed on public holidays.
Causeway Hospital, Coleraine – Outpatients 2 (Ground Floor)
Appointment Clinics, Causeway Hospital, Coleraine – Hub
Braid Valley Care Complex, Ballymena – Ground Floor South
Mid Ulster Hospital, Magherafelt – First Floor, Main Building
Northern Regional College Newtownabbey Campus, 400 Shore Road, Newtownabbey BT37 9RS
Northern Regional College Ballymena Campus, Trostan Avenue Building, Ballymena BT43 7BN
The GUM (Genito Urinary Medicine) Service provides free sexual health advice, testing and treatment for genital infections and other sexually transmitted infections.
Clinics are held in
John Mitchel Place, Newry – Monday afternoon and Wednesday morning
Portadown Health Centre – Tuesday and Thursday
Ramone Outpatients, Craigavon Area Hospital – Friday morning
The clinics operate an appointment system. To book an appointment please call 028 3756 2080.
Positive Life offer free Rapid HIV Screening Monday to Friday between 10am and 4pm. Please call 028 9024 9268 in confidence to book an appointment.
We would always recommend regular sexual health screening for people who are sexually active. STI screening can be done via the comfort of your own home using the SH:24 service or by attending a GUM clinic.
Further information on home testing can be found at https://sh24.org.uk/
Further information on Belfast Trust GUM Services can be found at https://belfasttrust.hscni.net/service/sexual-health-and-hiv-services/
There are two ways to make a Belfast Trust GUM clinic appointment:
Call 028 9615 2111 – between 8.15am and 10.15am, Monday to Friday.
This appointment line is extremely busy – please listen carefully to each option and follow the instructions provided.
Talk to your GP – they can make a referral and get an appointment for you, although this may take longer.
Your appointment will be with a doctor or specialist nurse.
Due to COVID19 the clinic can no longer provide walk in services for the foreseeable future.
Please contact the clinic first on 028 7161 1269 between the hours of 8.30am-4.30pm for an appointment slot.
For any emergencies outside of these hours please contact the Emergency Department/ Out of Hours.
There will be no service available in Omagh for the foreseeable future. Please contact Altnagelvin clinic for advice or an appointment.
Working in partnership with the NHS, SH:24 provide STI testing, diagnosis and treatment, oral contraception, the morning after pill and specialist remote clinical support.
They are not-for-profit and the service is free.
Find out more at https://sh24.org.uk/
There are a number of student locations accross Northern Ireland who provide Sexual Health Services to their students.
Many stock Positive Life Safer Sex Packs.
If you would like your student organisation to become involved in Positive Life's Free Condom initiative get in touch.
Condoms are used during sex to provide a barrier. When used properly and consistently, they can prevent HIV and many other sexually transmitted infections. Used correctly, they are also an effective form of contraception (preventing a pregnancy). Both male and female condoms are available.
Further information about condoms and their safe usage can be found in these downloadable leaflets from NAM.
You can read more about the various STI's by following the links below.
If you are sexually active, it is important to have regular sexual health check-ups. For people considered to be at high risk of STIs (because they have had sex without a condom with a new partner, have multiple partners, or been diagnosed with an STI), the recommendation is to have a check-up every three months.
Many HIV clinics share a building with a sexual health clinic and many HIV clinics include sexual health screening as part of their routine HIV care. You can choose which sexual health clinic you go to. It does not have to be the one nearest your home or the one linked to your HIV clinic.
Visits to sexual health clinics usually involve seeing a healthcare provider who will ask you about the kind of sex you are having and whether you have any symptoms of an STI before examining you. It is important to be honest about the types of sex you have had, so you can be given the appropriate tests.
This refers to when an HIV+ person is on effective treatment and the levels of the HIV virus in their blood is reduced to such a small amount that they are unable to pass HIV on to their sexual partners.
If you are HIV+ you can read more about what U=U menas for you in this leaflet from AIDSmap.
If you are HIV - and you would like to know more about U=U and what it means for you, this leaflet may be useful.