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Postgrad Med J 89:183-184 doi:10.1136/postgradmedj-2012-050626rep
  • Republished editorial

Republished: Mainstreaming HIV services for men who have sex with men: the role of general practitioners

  1. Joseph D Tucker3
  1. 1Department of Family Medicine and Primary Care, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
  2. 2Faculty of Health Sciences, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia
  3. 3UNC Project-China, Guangdong Provincial STD Control Center, Guangzhou, China
  1. Correspondence to Dr William C W Wong, Department of Family Medicine and Primary Care, The University of Hong Kong, 3rd Fl., Ap Lei Chau Clinic, 161 Main Street, Ap Lei Chau, Hong Kong, China
  • Accepted 25 September 2012

Mainstreaming HIV services for men who have sex with men: The role of general practitioners

General practitioners (GPs) and other primary care doctors around the world have a strong potential for providing quality HIV prevention, testing and treatment for men who have sex with men, as advocated by the recent WHO guideline.1 As the HIV epidemic becomes more focused on chronic disease care in many parts of the world, a number of primary care issues come to the forefront of clinical HIV service delivery. GPs have advantages in providing HIV services because of their position as trusted, community-based, long-term advocates for their patients. The training and capacity of GPs to engage marginalised groups of people increase the likelihood that GPs can provide MSM with needed, high-quality clinical care.

The health problems and health-seeking behaviours of MSM are fundamentally no different from other men seen by GPs. Management of common problems such as respiratory tract infections and hypertension is the same as for other men. Yet MSM may also have an increased risk of HIV, sexually transmitted infections including human papillomavirus, mental health problems2 ,3 and drug and alcohol use.3 Recent research on sexually transmitted Hepatitis C infection, especially among HIV-infected MSM, has been described4 and individuals who have a history of anal sex are more likely to acquire anal dysplasia.5 Among young MSM, bullying and associated …