NACCHO is launching a community of practice (CoP) that focuses on STI express services, also known as fast-tracking, which refer to triage-based STI testing without a full clinical examination.
About Express Services
To address rising STI rates and related health care costs, some U.S. and international STI clinics have introduced STI express services, and many more are considering it. Clinics have a number of motivations for implementing express services, including reducing clinic clog, gaining staffing efficiency, reducing time to treatment, and increasing access to care. Creating more patient-centered experiences and decreasing stigma associated with STI testing are also key motivating factors to considering alternative approaches to providing STI testing. Through its STI Express Initiative, NACCHO has identified five key aspects of express services that alter the clinic design from a traditional STi model:
- Implementation of triage
- Staffing models that maximize top of license strategies
- Patient self-collection of swabs
- Technology and automation to conserve time and staffing
- Opportunity to implement in diverse settings.
Published literature highlights a number of benefits of express services, including: increased clinic capacity, decreased cost, reduced time to treatment, and reduced visit time. However, with these benefits come potential drawbacks. For example, express services could result in missed diagnoses of STIs other than chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis and fewer opportunities for same-day treatment. Clinics must weigh these drawbacks against the benefits when determining what types of services may be best suited for their patient populations, and what express services should look like in their setting.
About the CoP
A CoP is a group of people who share a concern, set of problems, or passion about a topic, and who deepen their knowledge and expertise by interacting on an ongoing basis. This CoP is intended to enable clinics to make decisions about, establish, and scale-up express services through peer engagement and resource sharing.
Participating clinics will be given access to an online discussion portal via Slack to pose and respond to questions and review and request resources. Anticipated discussion topics include challenges related to EHRs and billing, staffing models, and automation and technology. Resources gathered through the Community of Practice and materials developed through other project activities will be shared broadly.
Engagement is expected to occur primarily via Slack, but NACCHO also intends to facilitate calls and conduct additional learning opportunities.
All STD clinics are eligible to participate. Please sign up by filling out this form. Sign up for NACCHO’s HIV, STI, & Viral Hepatitis Digest to get the latest information and updates about NACCHO’s STD Express Initiative. Contact Samantha Ritter, Senior Program Analyst for HIV, STI, & Viral Hepatitis, at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.