Desmond for Soton's Sexual Health Services

Researchers from Dr Ed, an online medical service, have published the first sexual health report card of services at the 24 prestigious Russell Group universities. Southampton earned itself a Desmond Tutu (2:2) […]


Researchers from Dr Ed, an online medical service, have published the first sexual health report card of services at the 24 prestigious Russell Group universities. Southampton earned itself a Desmond Tutu (2:2) rating. 

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Southampton came 16th out of the 24 universities involved. The University of Southampton did particularly badly in general information about sexual health on campus, special events and testing and in sexual assault testing resulting in a grade of 51 out of 100 (a 2:2 to us). Apparently however, the University has ‘A’ grade sexual health information on the website and access to contraception. This is reflected by the infamous Soton Tab sex survey that told us 93% of students use contraception when having sex.

The report was inspired by a survey carried out in the US by a condom manufacturer, which helped drive improvements to services. The UK’s version is hoped to have the same effect and is going to be extended to other universities aiming to see standardised sexual health services for all students around the country.

Dr Ed says most universities were good at offering access to condoms and other non-prescription contraceptives, and many had good access to STD tests. Southampton provided these during Freshers’ fortnight at the Cube as well as giving out free condoms in SUSU. But it appears more can be done to improve the sexual health of us students with more access to nursing, contraception, leaflets and advice on posters, specifically around Halls and other sites under the university’s name.

The results published are anticipated to increase awareness of student sexual health issues and encourage universities to both take them more seriously and to learn from the best examples already in existence. 

The full results can be found here.

What do you think of the university’s information on sexual health? Do you think there should be more?