Accessing MSHC

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Melbourne Sexual Health Centre will be trialling a phone-ahead service for STI screening. This will help avoid long waits that individuals sometimes experience with our walk-in service.

Did you know most GPs also offer testing for sexually transmitted infections? Here are links to help you find a GP and what tests you might need to have Check Your Risk

If you:

  • Need routine STI testing (and have no genital symptoms*)          
  • Need a certificate for sex work

    Some reading before you arrive:

  • TAG (tests for men who have sex with men)
  • NETs (tests for hetrosexuals)
  • Sex worker (tests for sex workers)
    

If you:

  • Have genital symptoms*
  • Have been asked to return 
  • Need PEP* 
  • Or a person you recently had sex with was diagnosed with an STI    
  • Need wart treatment 
  • Have a doctor’s referral letter
  • Have experienced a recent sexual assault

    

What are genital symptoms?

  • Discharge from your penis, anus or vagina 
  • Genital or anal rash, lumps, ulcers or sores 
  • Pain when you pass urine / pee 
  • Deep pelvic pain with vaginal sex 

Tip: A sore throat is not a genital symptom.

I don’t have symptoms, but I want to get checked for STIs

If you do not have genital symptoms, and want to be tested, you will need to phone the centre on 9341 6200 before you visit.

When you call, one of our sexual health nurses will give you a Time To Test - either to attend the same day or the following. In some cases, we may help you find a GP.

We will not be able to see you if you arrive without an assigned time slot.

Note, this does not apply to the Green Room Service

I have symptoms and think I may have an STI

If you have genital symptoms, you can walk in and wait. You do not have to phone ahead if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Discharge from your penis anus or vagina
  • Genital or anal rash, lumps, ulcers or sores
  • Pain when you pass urine / pee
  • Deep pelvic pain with vaginal sex

Tip: A sore throat is not a genital symptom.

Last time I visited, I was able to walk in and wait. Why do I need to phone first?

Due to increasing demand for our service, some people were spending lengthy periods in our waiting area before they can be seen - or even asked to come back the next day.

By phoning ahead, we can let you know if we can see you that day, and approximately when that will be.

What is a check-up for STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections)?

These tests are when you want testing for STIs and have no symptoms, just routine testing.

What is the cost?

Services at Melbourne Sexual Health Centre are free for everyone, including international visitors. No medical insurance is necessary. If you are referred to a service outside MSHC for further testing, some costs may apply.

Medicare

Bring your Medicare card if you have one. If you do not have a Medicare card, you can still get free sexual health care.

How far in advance can I call for a Time To Test?

Time To Test slots are provided for either the same day, or the following day:

  • If you phone in the morning, we will aim to offer you any available times for that day
  • If you phone after midday (12 noon), we will offer you any times still available for that day or for the next morning.
  • You can call on Fridays for a Time To Test on Mondays

I have been given a Time To Test slot. What next?

Please arrive at least 10 minutes before your Time To Test so that you have time to sign in. Bring your Medicare card if you have one.

You will not be required to see the triage nurse on arrival.

Register at the touch screen terminal and chose the appointment option.

If you are more than 5 minutes late, we will ask you to reschedule

While we will do our best to see you promptly, you may spend some time waiting for your tests and we thank you for your patience.

Do I need to see the triage nurse when I arrive?

If you have booked a Time To Test you will not need to see the Triage Nurse. You will need to see the Triage Nurse on arrival if:

  • You need a translator (LOTE, hearing impaired)
  • We have asked you to attend
  • You have symptoms (see above)
  • You need PEP
  • Your doctor has sent you in
  • A person you have had sex with has told you they have an STI and you’d like to attend our service for treatment
  • You have experienced a sexual assault and your visit is related to that

I don’t have symptoms, I’m nearby the centre, can I just drop in for an STI test?

No. You need to phone us to book a Time To Test before coming in.

What happens if I’m late for my booking?

We will try to see you, but you may need to re-schedule or even call again for another time.

Can I book if I have symptoms?

No. If you have symptoms, please attend the walk-in service, or visit your GP.

I have insurance, can I use it at MSHC?

MSHC is a free service and you do not need health insurance. If a GP service is better for you, check with your insurance provider to find out how you can use your insurance at a GP.

Can I see a GP for screening tests?

Yes any GP can test you for sexually transmissible infections. It may be easier for you to get to a GP service in your area for these routine tests.

www.healthdirect.gov.au/australian-health-services

Will a GP know what to test for?

The GP can go to our website to find out, or you can let the GP know by visiting our website yourself.

Your GP can also ring our centre to speak to one of medical specialists.

www.checkyourrisk.org.au/

Do I have to pay for a GP?

If you have Medicare and go to a bulk billing GP you will not have to pay. Check here to find a GP

www.healthdirect.gov.au/australian-health-services

What happens if I go to a GP and I don’t have Medicare?

You will have to pay a fee at a GP service, call the practice to find out what that cost is. If you have health insurance, your insurance may cover some or all of the cost. Check with your insurance company to find out.