A computer alert to increase chlamydia testing of high risk women in general practice: A randomised controlled trial. [ 2005 - 2006 ]

Also known as: A computer alert to increase chlamydia testing of high risk women in general practice.

Research Grant

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Researchers: Prof Christopher Fairley (Principal investigator) ,  A/Pr Lyle Gurrin A/Pr Marie Pirotta Prof Jane Gunn Prof Jane Hocking
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Brief description Chlamydia trachomatis infection is the most common notifiable sexually transmissible infection (STI) in Australia, with over 30,000 infections notified in 2003, rising by 20% each year. Infection with chlamydia can have considerable complications, particularly for women - it is a leading cause of pelvic inflammatory disease and tubal infertility. Unfortunately, as many as 85% of people with infection do not have any symptoms, so are unaware they have chlamydia; yet chlamydia is easy to diagnose with urine tests and easy to treat with single dose antibiotics. Over 65% of infections diagnosed in women are among those aged 16 to 24 years. Internationally, screening programs for chlamydia have reduced the number of people with the infection and have also reduced the rate of complications arising from infection. However, Australia does not have a screening program and only tests about 4% of 16 to 24 year old women, the largest group at risk of infection, each year. We propose to conduct a study which tests the effect of using a computer based alert. This alert is designed to prompt doctors to discuss chlamydia testing with sexually active women aged 16 to 24 years. A group of general practices will be selected. We will randomly allocate some practices to have the alert installed on their computers and the remaining practices will receive no intervention. We will observe both groups of general practices over 12 months and compare their chlamydia testing rates among women aged 16 to 24 years. We estimate that the alert will increase testing rates from the 4% currently tested to 10%. By testing and treating more women with the infection, we can reduce the number of people in the community with the infection. We will also be collecting information about the dollar cost of chlamydia infection to the community. This study will produce valuable information which can be used by government to inform the design of future chlamydia screening and control programs.

Funding Amount $AUD 182,575.00

Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants

Notes Standard Project Grant

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