Put Your Health First this Festive Season – No Christmas Surprises

Put Your Health First this Festive Season – No Christmas Surprises
The North Coast HIV/Sexual Health, Hepatitis and Needle Syringe Services are encouraging people to put their health first this holiday season by practicing safe sex and reducing the chance of catching a sexually transmitted infection.

Manager HIV and Related Programs, Jenny Heslop said the best way to prevent a sexually transmitted infection was to use a condom and get tested regularly especially if you are sexually active.

“This is often the time of year when people are on holidays enjoying the sun, the festive celebrations and relaxing. Don’t relax too much and be aware that increased alcohol consumption often results in people taking unnecessary risks such as unsafe sex. This may increase the chance of catching a sexually transmitted or blood borne infection,” Ms Heslop said.

“These infections are preventable through safe sex and can be treated and managed if they are detected through regular testing.

“We would like to wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season and encourage them to heed the safe sex message.

“Injecting drug users are also encouraged to safely dispose of used needles and syringes appropriately in a sharps disposal bin to reduce the risk to others.”

Many Sexual Health and Needle Syringe Program services will be closed, or will operate with reduced hours and staff between 24 December and 4 January.

Services are available for people seeking sexual health advice:

  • If you think you may have been exposed to a sexually transmitted infection call the Sexual Health Information Line on 1800 451 624
  • If exposed to a blood borne infections contact the HEP C Helpline 1800 803 990 or the PEP Hotline (HIV) 1800 737 669
  • If accidentally pricked by a discarded needle call the Needle Stick Injury Hotline on 1800 804 823.
  • Finding discarded needles and syringes then call the Needle Clean-up Hotline on 1800 633 353.

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