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Service users' beliefs about the partner notification process in a young person's sexual health clinic

Johal, Sarbjit; (2003) Service users' beliefs about the partner notification process in a young person's sexual health clinic. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The recent sharp rises in the rates of diagnosis of chlamydia and gonorrhoea are a prime public health concern (House of Commons Health Committee Report on Sexual Health, June 2003). The evidence seems to indicate that it is young heterosexual men and women, and young men who have sex with men who are most at risk of contracting these infections. One of the tools used by sexual health services to break the chain of transmission of these infections is partner notification. However, there is little data about the consequences of this process for the person who may disclose their infection to their sexual partner(s). This study uses a qualitative approach (interpretative phenomenological analysis; Smith, 1996) to gain a deeper understanding of the partner notification process. Two higher order domains emerged from the fifteen participants' transcripts; (1) Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) that are perceived as easy to cure are also seen as less threatening and stigmatising. This may encourage clinic attendance and notification to partners, but may reduce vigilance concerning infection risk, and (2) Diagnosis of an STI produces emotional reactions that affect the form, and possibly the effectiveness of partner notification. Most participants were able to inform their partners about their diagnosis, and described feeling a social responsibility to do so These results are related to the wider body of knowledge represented by traditional health psychology research, and discussed in terms of the wider literature. In the final section, the method used to gather and analyse the data are critiqued, and research opportunities and clinical implications from this study are outlined.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: Service users' beliefs about the partner notification process in a young person's sexual health clinic
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Health and environmental sciences; Sexually transmitted infections
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10109691
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