The number of new clients to our support service has increased steadily.
The latest statistics on the diagnosis of HIV and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) show the number of people in Ireland diagnosed with HIV has continued to rise in recent years, despite an overall decline in rates of new cases across the European Union – this is of great concern to Sexual Health West.
Clients may present themselves with multiple issues around testing, stigma, confidentiality, financial difficulties, stress and direct provision.
While the majority of our clients are from the Galway region, the growth in other areas is increasing year on year. The Infectious Disease Clinic at University College Hospital, Galway supports the region from Donegal to Clare and this is the main referral point for clients to Sexual Health West. Hence the client base we cover has by necessity extended beyond Galway, Mayo and Roscommon.
Our support service co-ordinator is available to meet with anyone in relation to all aspects of HIV/STIs and Hepatitis. We offer free one-to-one client support to including pre-and post-test support - appointments can be arranged by calling 091 566266 / e:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Support services are also available on Thursday morning at the University College Hospital Galway by arrangement.
We also operate a drop clinic at the Family Centre Castlebar on the first Tuesday of every month, re-starting post-lockdown on 3 Nov 2020.
Rapid HIV Testing
We offer free HIV testing across the region at various locations. The HIV testing gives a result in one minute and the test involves a simple finger prick.
Testing sessions are advertised here: and also at www.knownow.ie
We offer telephone and email support to those who are unable to meet with our care and support co-ordinator.
Our co-ordinator liaises with other service providers on behalf of our clients. Referrals are also made where necessary.
Service users can also have added support by meeting up with the peer group or avail of the befriending/buddy support that is now established. Regular seminars are held with professional speakers on such topics as treatments, nutrition, personal development or legal issues around HIV.
Our co-ordinator has an outreach clinic in Castlebar on the first Tuesday of every month in the Family Care Centre, Chapel St, Castlebar, Co.Mayo.