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Gay News : Publications : Issue 310 : Advies.chat : Online STD Test Advisor

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Advies.chat : Online STD Test Advisor

by our Editors in Health & Body , 04 juni 2017


Recently Soa Aids Nederland introduced Advies.chat. It is the first online STD test advisor that gives reliable advice on Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) test, whenever you need it.

With this new tool, you will quickly and easily discover whether you are at risk of an STD and what is the best way of testing. Advies.chat also refers to reliable STD self-test providers. It is the solution for anyone experiencing barriers in testing for HIV and other STDs, for example because of feelings of shame, costs, or fear of the outcome. Thus, you have direct access to custom advice without anyone looking over your shoulders and asking questions about your sex life. Additionally, it is a tool to prevent symptoms.

In the Netherlands, approximately 25,000 people are living with HIV. More than 10% is not in the know about their own HIV status because they were never tested. People also walk around unnoticed with other STDs. Because of chlamydia or gonorrhoea, women can have such complaints as chronic abdominal pain, infertility or premature birth. Men can get epididymitis or experience a temporary reduced fertility.

“Each and every barrier for testing STDs is harmful to public health. With Advies.chat, everyone in the Netherlands now has direct access to a reliable STD test advice,” Hanna Bos, a doctor in Infectious Disease Control at Soa Aids Nederland notes. “Early detection and treatment of HIV and other STDs makes it more likely that your complaints will pass, and prevent you from passing the STD on to others.”

There are many reasons why people do not get tested, for example, fear of the outcome, unease with your GP (General Practitioner, huisarts), the costs of an STD test, or budget cuts resulting in fewer people that can attend the Health Clinic (GGD). Anyone ever having to go to the GGD, including gay men, has experienced long waiting times.

“For STD testing, we always advise to visit the GP or the GGD, but not everyone is willing or able to do so. We see an increasing number of people using STD self-tests, but unfortunately the bulk of these tests is completely unreliable. The Advies.chat guides you online to the available STD self-tests you can rely on,” Hanna Bos concludes.

Testwijzer Advies.chat is fully automated and follows the norm of the Nederlands Huisartsen Genootschap (NHG) for an STD consult. This means you can expect the same questions a GP would ask. The app was developed in close cooperation with the GGD, and advice is based on over 30 years of experience with the AIDS/STD information hotline. Whenever you do not understand something or have additional questions, the chat bot will assist you further.
 








 
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In the New Issue of Gay News, 312, August 2017







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