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RESEARCH ARTICLE

Attendance patterns and chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing among young people in Aboriginal primary health centres in New South Wales, Australia

Simon Graham A B G , Handan C. Wand A , James S. Ward C , Janet Knox D , Debbie McCowen E , Patricia Bullen E , Julie Booker E , Chris O’Brien E , Kristine Garrett E , Basil Donovan A F , John Kaldor A and Rebecca J. Guy A
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Kirby Institute, UNSW Australia, Sydney, NSW 2033, Australia.

B Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, 207 Bouverie Street, Parkville, Vic. 3051, Australia.

C South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute, North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5001, Australia.

D North Coast Area Health Service, 4 Sherpard Lane, Lismore, NSW 2480, Australia.

E Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service, NSW, Australia.

F Sydney Sexual Health Centre, Sydney Hospital, Macquarie Street, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia.

G Corresponding author. Email: simon.graham@unimelb.edu.au

Sexual Health 12(5) 445-452 https://doi.org/10.1071/SH15007
Submitted: 19 January 2015  Accepted: 14 June 2015   Published: 27 July 2015

Abstract

Background: To inform a sexual health quality improvement program we examined chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing rates among 15–29 year olds attending Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHS) in New South Wales, Australia, and factors associated with chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing. Methods: From 2009 to 2011, consultation and testing data were extracted from four ACCHS. Over the study period, we calculated the median number of consultations per person and interquartile range (IQR), the proportion attending (overall and annually), the proportion tested for chlamydia and gonorrhoea, and those who tested positive. We examined factors associated with chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing using logistic regression. Results: Overall, 2896 15–29-year-olds attended the ACCHSs, 1223 were male and 1673 were female. The median number of consultations was five (IQR 2–12), four (IQR 1–8) for males and seven (IQR 3–14) for females (P < 0.001). Nineteen percent of males and 32% of females attended in each year of the study (P < 0.001). Overall, 17% were tested for chlamydia (10% of males and 22% of females, P < 0.001), and 7% were tested annually (3% of males and 11% of females, P < 0.001). Findings were similar for gonorrhoea testing. In the study period, 10% tested positive for chlamydia (14% of males and 9% of females, P < 0.001) and 0.6% for gonorrhoea. Factors independently associated with chlamydia testing were being female (adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 2.64, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.07–3.36), being 20–24 years old (AOR: 1.58, 95% CI: 1.20–2.08), and having >3 consultations (AOR: 16.97, 95% CI: 10.32–27.92). Conclusions: More frequent attendance was strongly associated with being tested for chlamydia and gonorrhoea. To increase testing, ACCHS could develop testing strategies and encourage young people to attend more frequently.

Additional keywords: ACCHS, consultations, general practice, Indigenous, sexual health.


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