39% of Oxford students have had unprotected sex

Only 61% of Oxford students always ensure that they or their partners wear protection during sex, C+ has found. However, the survey suggests that only one in twenty Oxford students have contracted an STI, lower than the national average of around one in four.

Charlotte Hendy, OUSU VP Welfare and Equal Oportunities, commented, “OUSU works closely with the local GUM clinic, enabling them to provide Common Rooms with chlamydia tests, and incentives. The ‘pee for a pint’ initiative, for example, was hugely successful across Oxford.

“Unfortunately, NHS cuts mean that incentives are no longer provided, but Common Rooms may still request chlamydia tests and run their own sexual health drives. OUSU is continuing to work closely with the GUM clinic, and in particular to establish regular city centre HIV testing, following its successful HIV and sexual health events last term.”

Free screening remains available to everyone aged 16-24 in Oxfordshire. Welfare officers can contact the Chlamydia Screening Office at the Churchill Hospital to organise in-college screening for free. The Churchill has also organised a pilot condom distribution scheme in three colleges, which is now available in all colleges at the request of welfare officers.

Chlamydia was the single most common STI contracted by students on a national scale last year, with herpes a distant second. Symptoms for the STI include pain in the testes and penis for men, and bleeding during sex and heavier than usual periods for women.

Chlamydia was the most common STI among students, with 7 students (1.39%) admitting to the disease. The most common response was a trip to the Genitourinary Medicine (GUM) Clinic in the Churchill Hospital. Gonorrhoea also made an appearance, with three students (0.59%) having had the illness. One student described how he’d had the STI cured: “I went to doctors, they put a stick up my penis and it was really painful. Then they gave me antibiotics and I was cured.”

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Questions about STIs or contraception? Contact advice@ousu.org or the local GUM clinic on 01865 231231.