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Sexual health tests

Do I need a sexual health test?

If you are sexually active, it's a good idea to have a test. Find out what options are available to you and how soon you should get a test.

STI Testing FAQs

STI Testing FAQs 


Our service is confidential. Your personal details will not be given to anybody without your consent.


When you attend for your visit you will need to complete a registration form including your name and contact details. It is important that these details are correct to enable us to contact you if we should need to. Please inform us of the preferred way for us to contact you, for example by phone, text, mail or email. Please arrive 10 minutes before your appointment time to complete this form.

What do I need to know before I arrive? What could impact on my test results?

You will be asked to provide your name and date of birth as they appear on your birth certificate or passport and your full contact details

If you have a penis, please do not pass urine for 2 hours prior to your appointment if you wish to be screened for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) as this may affect our ability to detect an infection. 

If you don't have any symptoms and you want a sexual health check, we suggest an appointment two weeks after your last unprotected sex. This is because infections such as chlamydia and gonorrhoea may take up to two weeks to show up on tests (and for some infections like syphilis and HIV it may take longer).

If you are not sure when is the best time to get checked or if you develop symptoms, please call 0800 739 432 and speak with a nurse who will advise you.

What will I be tested for?

Each client is individually assessed and recommended tests will be discussed.

A standard STI test includes a urine sample and/ or swabs for chlamydia and gonorrhoea, and a blood test for HIV and syphilis.

Additional tests may be recommended following the assessment. 

Genital skin examination

As part of your check-up, the doctor or nurse will offer to examine the genital skin looking for lumps, bumps, sores or rashes which may be signs of infections such as genital warts, genital herpes or syphilis.

An examination is recommended especially if you have symptoms.

Nurses and doctors at the clinic are experts at genital examinations and at making the experience as comfortable as possible for you. But if you are too embarrassed or shy to have an examination you can provide self-taken samples for chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing.

If you have a vagina

Routinely, swabs are taken from the vagina to detect infection. Sometimes it may be recommended to take swabs from your throat or anus depending on your history and symptoms.

Using our microscopes, we are sometimes able to see thrush, bacterial vaginosis, trichomonas and gonorrhoea on the day of attendance.

We also send samples away to the laboratory for further testing.

If you have a penis

A urine sample is taken for chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing. If you have pain passing urine or discharge from your penis a small swab may be taken from the tip of the urethra (opening at the tip of the penis).

This sample will be looked at under the microscope on the day so we can decide whether you need treatment before your other test results come back.

If you have sex with other men, it is usually recommended to have swabs taken from your throat and anus for testing for chlamydia and gonorrhoea.

Infections like chlamydia and gonorrhoea usually don't have symptoms and are easily passed on though oral and anal sex or from rimming, fingering and sharing of sex toys.

Blood tests

We offer routine screening for HIV and Syphilis. Hepatitis A, B and C screening is offered when appropriate.

What about my test results?

Some results may be available on the day you attend. Results from samples sent to the laboratory can take up to 10 days to return.

If any of your results come back as positive (meaning you have an infection) we will contact you as soon as possible. This is why it is important for us to have your correct details.

In some situations, you may need to re-attend for your results or for treatment. This will be discussed with you at the time of your consultation.

If you have a sexual health check at your family doctor, the standard tests you should be offered are:

  • A blood test for HIV and syphilis
  • A urine test for gonorrhoea, chlamydia (if you have a penis)
  • A vaginal swab for gonorrhoea, chlamydia and trichomaniasis (if you have a vagina)
  • A rectal swab and oral swab for gonorrhoea, chlamydia (if you are a man who has sex with men).