Improving the antenatal and post-partum management of women presenting to Sexual Health Services with positive syphilis serology through audit

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The incidence of congenital syphilis remains low in the UK, but the morbidity and mortality to babies born to women who are untreated for the condition make testing for the disease antenatally one of the most cost-effective screening programmes. Women attending North Middlesex Hospital, UK with a positive syphilis test at their antenatal booking visit are referred to St Ann’s Sexual Health Clinic, London, for management and contact tracing. We were concerned that our initial audit revealed that a large proportion of women referred to our service never attended and recorded partner notification was poor. Following the implementation of recommendations, specifically the introduction of an electronic referral system, re-audit showed an improvement in attendance, contact tracing, documentation and communication.

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