British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) conference May 2011

This week saw the British Association of Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) descend on Newcastle, in the North East of England, and not far from the Angel of the North, one of the wonders of Britain. This meeting, attended by over 500 sexual health clinicians, always provides an impressive array of research studies from small centres and large teaching hospitals alike.

Last year, we reported in our blog a 10 top papers session in which Steve Taylor voted best paper of the year an STI paper from Australia, reporting a decline in HPV vaccination his top paper of 2010. The audience was fascinated this year by Professor Kit Fairley’s presentation of recent Australian data from the same centre, where the 4-valent vaccine Gardasil appears to have had a dramatic effect on genital warts in the youngest cohort of women vaccinated before they became sexually active. We look forward to hearing more.

We were delighted that this year’s BASHH conference again voted an STI published initiative as a winner – this time of a prize for service innovation. Gary Brook described his team’s experience of using electronic health records to reduce time to treatment, and to improve partner notification outcomes, in two STI papers (see below).¬† Though many clinics now use electronic records to some degree, few have used them with such an effective and determined focus on their potential to improve clinical outcomes. For this, the team was awarded the Cathy Harman memorial prize – STI is delighted to have published this research, demonstrating real benefit for patients. You might like to listen to the podcast on this research, at



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