Informing your partners of an STI (contact tracing)

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can cause serious health problems if untreated. Most people infected with STIs are unaware of their infection.

If you are diagnosed with an infection, treating your partner(s) can help to protect you from catching infection again. Treating your ex-partners may not only prevent them from having serious health problems but also stop the infection being passed on to others. Treatment of STIs and prevention of their spread is also our responsibility. It is for this reason we have trained staff to perform partner notification.

Informing partners of their risk of an STI is a sensitive issue. Our health advisors can help you with this task. They can contact your partner(s) and inform them that they may be at risk of the STI you have been diagnosed with, without naming you. To do this, the health advisors will ask you for your partner's or partners' name(s), age(s), and contact details (preferably mobile number).

Some patients may choose to inform their partners themselves. In that case, our health advisors will contact patients after a few weeks to confirm the partner(s) have been informed.

We believe that letting our health advisors contact your partner(s) is the most convenient way for you; we do not usually need to contact you again. Remember, we will never disclose your identity to your partner(s) without your permission.

See the FPA website for a range of downloadable leaflets on contraception and sexually transmitted infections.

View FPA leaflets