Locally Commissioned Services

HIV PHARMACY POINT OF CARE TESTING

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Service Protocol


SOP & Clinical Guidance


It’s estimated that 103,700 people in the UK have HIV. Around 17% of these – 18,100 in total – don’t know they have it and are at risk of passing the virus on to others.¹

The Coventry HIV Point Of Care Testing Pharmacy pilot aims to increase the number of HIV tests undertaken in Coventry, especially with at risk groups such as the black African population and Men who have Sex with Men (MSM).   Testing through pharmacies has proven effective in other pilots as provides a confidential and convenient service. Pharmacy can provide access to this service for patients that may not have otherwise accessed this service. Early diagnosis means that treatment can be started before the infection can damage the body and health.

Pharmacies involved in this pilot will use the INSTI HIV-1/HIV-2 Antibody Point of Care blood spot Test (POCT) to screen for the HIV antibody. Patients whose blood samples give reactive results must attend the Integrated Sexual Health Service for a further blood test to have their HIV diagnosis confirmed.


Additional support and commonly asked questions.

  • How do I become accredited to provide HIV PoC Testing in Coventry?
  • Who is eligible for this service?
  • Do I need Hepatitis B vaccination to deliver this service?
  • Now that I am accredited, can I deliver the service in all pharmacies in Coventry?
  • If I am accredited to provide the scheme in Coventry can I provide it for other Local Authorities?
  • I am already accredited to provide the scheme in another Local Authority can I provide it in Coventry?
  • Where do I get testing kits from?
  • How does the Pharmacy get paid for providing the HIV PoC Testing service?
  • I have a safeguarding concern, what should I do?
  • What other information do I need?
How do I become accredited to provide HIV PoC Testing in Coventry?

All staff must be conversant with Universal Precautions, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH) 2000, Management of Health & Safety Regulations 1992 and the local policy for the management of body fluid exposures to staff.

Pharmacies must ensure that all staff involved in HIV testing have attended the free HIV POCT training provided by the Public Health Department (no payments for backfill can be made). Training will cover information about HIV, the use of point of care tests, communication (including dealing with stigma) data collection to access available funding and requirements regarding quality assurance. All appropriate staff in the pharmacy, including reception staff, should be aware of the project. A full outline of the training can be found in Appendix 2 of the HIV protocol.

Who is eligible for this service?

All patients requesting an HIV test who have self-identified as at risk (see below for risk groups)

OR

Patients who have been advised to have a test by a health professional (GP practices will be signposting new registrations for an HIV test).

Risk Groups

As recommended by the UK National HIV testing guidelines (2008) the risk groups who should be testing in the pharmacy scheme are:

  • all men who have disclosed sexual contact with men
  • all female sexual contacts of men who have sex with men
  • all patients reporting a history of injecting drug use and their partners (refer to drug and alcohol services if appropriate)
  • all men and women known to be from countries with a >1% prevalence i,e, those from sub Saharan Africa see http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SH.DYN.AIDS.ZS for a list of countries with a HIV prevalence over 1%
  • male or female sex workers, or men or women who disclose frequent access to sex workers * or access to sex workers
  • all men and women who report sexual contact abroad or in the UK with individuals from countries with a >1% prevalence i.e. those from sub Saharan Africa see http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SH.DYN.AIDS.ZS for a list of countries with a HIV prevalence over 1%*

However, anyone who has had unprotected sex and would like a test should be offered an HIV test.

Do I need Hepatitis B vaccination to deliver this service?

Yes, and the member of the team who is doing the testing must also have their immunity confirmed.

Now that I am accredited, can I deliver the service in all pharmacies in Coventry?
If I am accredited to provide the scheme in Coventry can I provide it for other Local Authorities?

No this service is specific to Coventry.

I am already accredited to provide the scheme in another Local Authority can I provide it in Coventry?
Where do I get testing kits from?

The INSTI HIV-1/HIV-2 Antibody kits will be provided via the Coventry Public Health Department. Please contact jane.craig@coventry.gov.uk to order more kits

How does the Pharmacy get paid for providing the HIV PoC Testing service?

The test offer and results must be recorded by the pharmacy and provided to the management agency (to be confirmed by the project manager in Public Health) to enable the pharmacy to claim the funding of £10 per test performed

I have a safeguarding concern, what should I do?
What other information do I need?

Reference
(1) http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/STIs/Pages/get-tested-HIV-early.aspx

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