How we made sexual health testing easier to access

Sexual health testing

“Everybody should have access to high quality health care, no matter who they are and no matter where they are in the country.” – Ministry of Health, New Zealand.

But what does this look like in reality when we are talking about sexual health services?

“Sexual health testing can be a challenging and difficult issue for some. It may not always be easy for some people to see a doctor or specialist, while for others, they may not be comfortable discussing their sexual health in-person.”” says John Osborne, Commercial Manager – Awanui.

“As part of the Awaunui network commitment to supporting better health outcomes for all people of Aotearoa New Zealand, we took a look at how the sexual health testing we do in our laboratories could be made easier to access.”

The result? Sexual Health 101, an innovative, online service providing direct access to chlamydia, gonorrhoea, HIV, and syphilis testing, making Sexual Health testing as accessible as possible across Aotearoa New Zealand within the network of Awanui collection centres.

“Our objective is to reduce barriers to accessing sexual health testing services. Whether a person does not want to present in person, they are not easily getting an appointment with a sexual health service, or they do not want to discuss their situation; what we care about is people being able to provide access to testing in the way that suits them best – Sexual Health 101 is one of those ways.” says John.

“The service is designed to be easy-to-access, affordable and confidential. Once an order is placed through the website, a test pack is sent out in plain, discreet packaging to the address of choice, and all laboratory tests are carried out in the strictest confidence. At no time do we disclose the customers information and results are delivered directly to their email address.”

John says all tests are undertaken and verified at our IANZ accredited laboratories.

“Regular testing for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can mean an infection is detected and treated early, reducing the risk of illness, and preventing transmission.”

“Sexual Health 101 allows people to have access to the testing services and information they need, no matter where they are, and their individual circumstances.”

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