Lehigh County Health & Medicine Winter 2019 - 22

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The process of conducting Partner Services can be complicated. An
initial conversation focuses on creating a rapport with the client and
isn't always the best time to inquire about partner names and contact
information. The reaction to the new HIV positive diagnosis varies
based on the person.

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22 Lehigh County Health & Medicine | WINTER 2019

Partners are then contacted ideally by phone, home visit or at
community locations. At times a letter is sent asking partners to
contact the Health Bureau, but never is an individual told they are
a contact to an STI by letter. The index patient's identity is never
divulged under any circumstance. The partner is informed that we
have reason to believe they have been exposed to HIV and are offered
testing. If a positive result is obtained, Partner Services will then begin
with this new client.
Every partner identified and tested helps to stop disease transmission.
We ask providers who are meeting with newly-diagnosed HIV positive
patients to contact the appropriate Health Bureau as soon as possible
and allow trained staff the opportunity to provide our services. It will
take communication and collaboration between public health and
primary care to reduce the incidence of STIs.

WINTER 2018

Official Publ

On some occasions, a newly-diagnosed patient can discuss partner
notification, but more likely, this initial meeting may require those
providing partner services to take a support role for the client and an
additional follow-up contact may be needed. This follow-up with the
patient may occur in conjunction with admission into care, which
ideally happens immediately. It is crucial to be as accommodating as
possible to patients and it is often during additional encounters when
patients will begin to trust and divulge more partner contacts. The
act of showing support and maintaining contact resonates strongly
for many people and even encourages compliance with treatment.

The Partner Services process is an example of the core mission of
public health as it is a proactive partnership approach to education
and the prevention of disease transmission. Discussing sexual behavior,
and most especially risky sexual behavior, can be challenging within
the confines of a time-limited medical appointment. Public health
staff have the time to spend.
We encourage providers to contact public health and to join us
in our mission of prevention through collaboration. Every patient
will receive Partner Services with confidentiality and respect and no
patient will be treated differently based upon race, religion, sexual
orientation or income.

Allentown Health Bureau 610.437.7760 Ext 3759
Bethlehem Health Bureau 610-865-7083
State Department of Health www.health.pa.gov


http://www.dccvoip.com http://www.health.pa.gov

Lehigh County Health & Medicine Winter 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Lehigh County Health & Medicine Winter 2019

Lehigh County Health & Medicine Winter 2019 - 1
Lehigh County Health & Medicine Winter 2019 - 2
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https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LehighCountyHealthMedicineSummer2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Spring20
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Winter19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Fall19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Summer19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Spring19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Winter18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Fall18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSummer18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSpring18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMWinter2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMWinter18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/Fall2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSummer2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSpring2017
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com