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Keywords:

  • Chlamydia trachomatis;
  • expedited partner therapy;
  • partner notification;
  • pharmacy

Please cite this paper as: Cameron S, Glasier A, Muir A, Scott G, Johnstone A, Quarrell H, Oroz C, McIntyre M, Miranda D, Todd G. Expedited partner therapy for Chlamydia trachomatis at the community pharmacy. BJOG 2010;117:1074–1079.

Objective  Expedited partner treatment (EPT) for uncomplicated Chlamydia trachomatis at the pharmacy is an alternative approach to partner notification that has not yet been evaluated within the UK. The aim of this study was to evaluate EPT for partners using pharmacies in Lothian.

Design  A pilot study over 18 months.

Setting  Selected healthcare settings and community pharmacies in Lothian, Scotland, UK.

Population  Sexual partners of index cases with uncomplicated C. trachomatis.

Methods  Index cases with uncomplicated C. trachomatis were given a pharmacy voucher to pass onto sexual partners. Partners could redeem vouchers for free treatment (azithromycin) at one of 90 pharmacies in the area.

Main outcome measures  The main outcome measure was the proportion of vouchers redeemed. Secondary outcomes included patient satisfaction, as determined at a telephone follow-up of a subgroup of female index cases from one study site, 1 month later.

Results  In total 577 vouchers were issued to chlamydia-positive index patients of mean age 22.9 years (range 15–47 years). A total of 231 vouchers were redeemed (40%), at a median of 2 days after issue. Only 4% of partners attended a clinic for treatment. Most index patients surveyed reported that partners were satisfied with this method of treatment (48 out of 55; 87%).

Conclusions  Expedited partner treatment for uncomplicated chlamydia at a pharmacy is a popular choice, and increases options on where, when and how partners are treated.