Birmingham: LGBT charity gets new sexual health services contract

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An LGBT charity in Birmingham is set to deliver new sexual health services for the city’s LGBT community.

Birmingham LGBT is part of a winning tender led by University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust.

The contract to provide the services has been awarded by Birmingham City Council.

University Hospitals Birmingham currently provides the majority of sexual health services in Birmingham, including the only purpose-built city centre clinic on Whittall Street.

The new sexual health system, branded ‘Umbrella’ will offer expanded services for men who have sex with men (MSM), and for the first time address the sexual health needs of the broader LGBT community including clinics for trans people, and women, with better access to testing and support.

Birmingham LGBT Director Steph Keeble said “Birmingham LGBT are really excited to have the opportunity to partner with University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust to deliver sexual health services  this is an great opportunity to be part of an innovative and inclusive partnership providing high quality sexual health services in Birmingham and Solihull.”

The new service will begin in August 2015 and further details will be released over the coming months.

Figures released last month from Public Health England (PHE) showed 3,250 gay and bisexual men were diagnosed with HIV last year – the highest ever figure.

It is estimated that over 7,000 gay men have an HIV infection that remains undiagnosed and that an estimated 2,800 men acquired HIV in 2013.

PHE said the figures underline the need to further increase both the numbers and frequency of HIV tests, which is critical to tackling the ongoing high levels of HIV transmission.

There were an estimated 7,305 people living with HIV in the West Midlands in 2013.