Have you ever tried to get a full sexual health screening done? I’m talking swabs, bloods, the works? Well I’ve had most things tested for but to my shame I’ve never had the full screening done to find out whether I have any of those lovely little darlings that sometimes take a piggy back along with you on your sexual exploits.
With all the health problems I have at the moment I thought that now was as good a time as any, especially after my ex and his rather dubious reasonings behind sex, to go and see what (if anything) is going on ‘down there’.
I looked up the Sexual Health Clinics for Leeds and got confused, so asked my nurse yesterday while getting bloods taken…she gave me a lovely list of walk in clinics, their addresses, opening times etc and off I trotted home to have a look.
You know what? Apparently now I’m over 25 I’m not supposed to want testing for these diseases! More than 70% of them were for ’25 and under only’. I’m confused, shouldn’t I be having sex now I’m over 25??
Anyway I found one near me that had no such label, it was open this afternoon so off I went to find it (Thank you SatNav on my phone) and embarrassed as hell in I went. Guess what? They don’t take over 25’s any more either!!
Now I’ve been trying to ring the GUM (Genito-Urinary Medicine) clinic for the past couple of days but only ever get an answer message…not even a warning that it is one, just a rambling voice telling me what I already know about their opening times. They don’t even have the decency to answer the phone so I can try to book an appointment. The clinic has walk in sessions but they’re notoriously busy and the web site says to allow 2-3 hours waiting time even if you get there at 8.30am before the place is open as they suggest!
So what am I supposed to do?
I can’t make an appointment because they don’t answer the phone
I won’t be able to sit there for that long waiting with the amount of pain I’m in
I can’t get in to any of the other clinics because I’m too old (there’s another one I’ll try tomorrow but I can’t even ring to check as their phones are only manned in clinic hours)
I’m absolutely furious at Leeds Teaching Hospitals right now! I’m furious at Leeds Sexual Health testing services in general.
It’s a major city in this country, filled with people out getting drunk, meeting people and having sex with them pretty much every night of the week. I’d say the majority of the people in this city are over 25 years old and yet we are the ones that are given the least chance to be tested for something that the NHS keeps making adverts to encourage us to do!
I’m not the only one either, even the receptionist at the clinic I went to today has the same problem and encouraged me pretty vehemently to fill in a feedback form and complain. I did…I ranted and I hope they listen. As soon as I got home I went onto their website, found the ‘Contact us’ section and filled out a form on there too where I had more space to tell them just what I think of their ‘service’ and how annoyed I am at the whole ridiculous situation. I even gave them my email address so that if they have any excuses they want to give me they can try but I will say now that whether it’s financial or resource based I don’t care!
I can only hope this situation is not the same anywhere else, that you can find someone willing to test you for sexually transmitted diseases without having to fight through the miasma I am.
They don’t know who they’re up against on this one, I will fight for those damn tests and win!