In commemoration of World AIDS Day (1 December 2023) the Trust welcomed a special visitor, local MP Sarah Jones, who came to our Emergency Department (ED) to learn about the pivotal role the hospital plays in raising awareness and early diagnosis of HIV.
The day was marked by various activities aimed at promoting awareness and encouraging proactive measures for sexual health. The hospital's CEO, Matthew, set an example by visiting the Sexual Health team's awareness stand and undergoing his annual HIV test. Utilising rapid testing, he received immediate results, showing the efficiency and effectiveness of the process.
The Sexual Health team took the opportunity to distribute self-test kits, informative leaflets, and sweet treats to both staff and patients, fostering open and candid conversations about the significance of prioritizing sexual health.
Since April 2022, EDs across South London have conducted a staggering 525,000 HIV tests, resulting in the identification of 181 patients with newly diagnosed HIV. This proactive approach to screening has been instrumental in early detection and subsequent care for individuals in the community.
MP Sarah Jones, Labour MP for Croydon Central, visited the Trust to learn about the exceptional work being carried out at the hospital, particularly with the automatic HIV screening taking place in ED - a practice that has significantly contributed to the early diagnosis of patients in Croydon. Jones met with Dr Subhro Banerjee, our Medical Director and Caldicott Guardian and Dr Ian Cormack, Clinical Lead HIV Medicine. Her visit aimed to commend and support the hospital's efforts in diagnosing individuals early, ensuring they receive timely care and support.
The collaborative efforts between the hospital and local authorities were acknowledged as crucial steps toward achieving better health outcomes for all.
The visit highlighted the importance of ongoing initiatives in tackling HIV, fostering awareness, and ensuring accessible healthcare services for the community. As the hospital continues its commitment to proactive screening and support, the message of early detection and care resonates strongly this World AIDS Day.