Support For Health Initiative Across County

SUFFOLK FA are supporting a health promotion initiative across the county.

Men and women aged under 25 are by far the most at risk group for chlamydia in Suffolk.

It is vital that people of this age regularly test for chlamydia because in most circumstances it shows no symptoms, is easy to pass on, and if left untreated can lead to nasty side effects such as infertility and reactive arthritis in both men and women.  

The Terrence Higgins Trust’s outreach service is funded by the NHS (iCaSH Suffolk) and successfully run in a large variety of settings including sports clubs, rugby clubs and gyms.

They visit clubs for ten minutes during a training day in order to offer free condoms, and an opportunity to do a chlamydia screen.  

They can offer a quick, informal visit to a full sexual health talk / activity. Staff are always well received as they are trained in making the topic engaging and offer free incentives (sperm key rings, glow in the dark condoms etc) for anyone that does a chlamydia test.  

A spokesman for the Trust said: “Chlamydia, which often has no symptoms, is a high risk for sexually active young men and women in Suffolk.  Nationally around one in ten are affected by it”.

“If it’s left untreated it can lead to debilitating conditions like reactive arthritis or even infertility. It’s a good idea to test for chlamydia regularly and our outreach service allows a free, convenient and completely confidential way of doing this.

“We regularly drop in to a large variety of settings including sports clubs, rugby clubs, gyms etc and we’re always happy to add more venues to our list.

“Young people can also access the service at many pharmacies and online at www.youngandfree.org.uk” 

A Suffolk FA spokesman said: “It is a good opportunity for players in the county to receive a free health check, and we are supportive of this initiative.”

The outreach service will be continuing their ‘tour of sports clubs’ and will be driving between various venues in Suffolk in evenings throughout the year. 

If your football club would like the outreach service to visit, please contact matthew.cubitt@tht.org.uk

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