Better2Know has looked at the health gains to be enjoyed from the detection or confirmation of the absence of Hepatitis C, Herpes I & II, Trichomonas and Gardnerella. The evidence is clear that these infections can lead to cancers, liver failure, legal problems, increased susceptibility to HIV infection and other STI’s, PID, complications with pregnancy, and in extreme cases, death.
We have also looked at what factors beyond the health outcomes contribute to a perception of Value for Money. We have examined the patient experience, possible health inequalities, communication, confidentiality and privacy, the quality of place where the health intervention is delivered, the benefits of short waiting times and the positive impact on productivity and other people that good health, indeed the knowledge that one is in good health, can bring.
Better2Know maintains that the benefits, whether measure in terms of health outcomes (early detection and earlier treatment) or in terms of other less quantifiable factors, far outstrip and outweigh the increased cost, represented by the differential between the Full Screen and the Platinum STD screen.
Finally, we must not forget the crucial factor of time in the calculation of Value for Money. All of the above benefits should not be summed just at the point in time when any results are delivered, but summed over a longer period of time over which the benefit of the comprehensive test lasts. Clearly, this will be determined in large measure by the individuals behaviour, but there can be no doubt that if the test was in response to a particular unfortunate incidence, it is likely the “lesson” will be learned, behaviours modified and the benefits of the Platinum Screen enjoyed over a period of months if not longer.