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Friday 22nd June 2018

STI funding diverted to debts

4th August 2006

Millions of pounds earmarked for sexual health services is being used to shore up NHS debts, according to a new survey.

With rising rates of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), the government declared improvements in services as a priority. But a report from the Independent Advisory Group on Sexual Health and HIV has found much of the £300m marked for sexual health services has not reached the frontline.

The Department of Health said local health trusts were responsible for sexual health services, while campaign groups have pointed to rising figures in STIs to back their concerns over the state of current provision.

June figures show the number of STIs rose by three per cent to 790,387 between 2004 to 2005 with the biggest rise seen in syphilis: cases jumped by 23 per cent.

The survey by the IAG, which advises the government, found some PCTs had absorbed their entire allocation into their general budget, while others withheld some or most of the funding.


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