Monday, February 9, 2015

county health service - STI testing

Before the booty text, I made an appointment for a STI screening with the local health services department, thinking that since the guy took off his condom the first time...I needed to be sure I was ok.  They were able to get me in the following morning.  Hours later I go and have sex again with the guy, figuring if I contracted anything, it probably would have been from the first time, well, provided he didn't sleep with other people since then.  Don't lecture me.

Point is it is smart to get tested, and frequently.

My appointment was for 9am but they asked me to get there at 8:15 to fill out paperwork.  I arrived, filled out an orange check in card and had a seat until I was called.  I went to a check in desk and verbally provided information, supplied my photo id and then signed and filled out about 10 sheets of paper.  Consent forms, disclosure forms, financial information, medical history forms, emergency contact form, etc.  When I was done, I was brought into an exam room for height, weight, blood pressure and then escorted to the bathroom to pee in a cup and then told to wait until I was called.  I waited about 15-20 minutes and met with the midwife.  She reviewed my paperwork, asked questions and I confirmed why I was there.  We went over possible tests and I asked about incubation times for the infections.  She explained that they use a sliding scale for testing and services.  I started to wonder...oh, how much will I have to pay for this? Yikes.  In NY this was a free service.  The midwife then supplied me with a vaginal swab and a breast gown.  She left the room and I was to collect my own vaginal sample with the supplied equipment.  I read the instructions twice.  I pulled down my pants, unwrapped the swab, stuck the swab in and moved it all around for 30ish seconds.  Removed, opened the tube with liquid, inserted stick breaking off the top and closed the lid.  Pulled up my pants and then took off my top and bra so she can give me a breast exam.  When that was all done they collected a little blood for the syphilis test.  I was brought to the checkout/financial area.  They gal provided an invoice based on the sliding scale.  My jaw dropped, $274.  Yikes.  Was it worth it?  But then I realized, I owned nothing...because I make nothing.  It was free for me.  8:15 am - 9:40 am.  Not bad.

Compared to the NY site, this site was more efficient, friendly, they didn't belittle me with my sexual past, was not as confidential, and is more of a doctor's office than just a walk-in clinic. I did not get a bag full of free condoms, although I think there were some on the wall.

When I get health insurance...I probably won't go back to the county department since I'll have found doctors and have some of these services covered.

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