Biala clinic scale-back affecting sex workers

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Queensland’s Prostitution Licensing Authority has hit back at the state government for scaling back services at a Brisbane sexual health clinic, claiming that many GP’s were often poorly equipped to deal with sex workers.

PLA chairman Manus Boyce said that cuts to the Biala House sex health clinic had noticeably impacted sex workers. “This has meant greater reliance by sex workers on general practitioners for sexual health checks,” My Boyce Said.

A spokesman for Health Minister Lawrence Springborg said while the MNHHS still provided services for people with complex sexual health needs, GPs were equipped to handle the rest.

“A GP is often the first point of contact in matters of personal health, so the primary health care sector is well placed to deliver non-complex sexual health services,” he said.

But Royal Australasian College of Physicians sexual health committee member Theo van Lieshout, who warned against the Biala cutbacks last year, said many sex workers avoided seeing their GPs about work-related matters.

“A sex worker might go to a GP and some might be knowledgeable about what needs to be done in terms of screening and some may not,” he said.

“Some may be judgemental, some may not. That’s the problem – it’s hit and miss.

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