Medics urging East Enders to get tested for STIs

Medics are urging more people to get tested for sexually transmitted diseases after it emerged that infection rates have increased in the East End.

There are almost 1,800 people with acute sexually transmitted infections in Tower Hamlets for every 100,000 of the population, according to the latest Health Protection Agency figures.

But NHS East London and the City said the rise in recorded statistics is not necessarily a bad thing as it means more people are getting tested and treated for STIs.

Esther Trenchard Mabere, co-director of public health for Tower Hamlets, said: “Like many inner city boroughs we have high rates of sexually transmitted infections especially amongst some young people, gay men and people of African origin.

“Over the last few years we have increased access to both condoms, prevention awareness campaigns and STI screening services through primary care, community health services and in specialist sexual health services.”

In neighbouring Newham a successful chlamydia campaign resulted in almost 40 per cent of 15 to 24-year-olds – the most at risk group - getting tested for the disease.

Testing was promoted through GP practices, pharmacies and sexual health clinics and in an educational film distributed on YouTube.

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