‘Partner services’ are offered to individuals who are infected with STDs, to their partners, and to other persons who are at increased risk for infection in an effort to prevent transmission of these diseases and to reduce suffering from their complications. The historical focus was to identify and locate the sexual contacts of infected persons and other persons at risk for behavioral or other factors and then refer them for medical examination and, as appropriate, for treatment.
Partner services has evolved to include a broad view of the clinical and epidemiologic activities needed to help persons infected with STDs. The basic process – interviewing infected persons and others potentially involved in transmission, identifying persons still at risk (whether through direct exposure or indirect involvement), and bringing the latter to diagnosis and treatment – has evolved along with societal, legal, and technological change.
Additionally, partner services are a clinical tool for identifying a patient’s needs and requirements and connecting the patient to appropriate care. Partner services also provide the basis for assessing local epidemiologic conditions, targeting resources, and evaluating program performance. Lastly, follow-up of partners who are at risk is a powerful tool for understanding the dynamics of disease transmission.
- Introducing Technology into Partner Services: A Toolkit for Programs – The Toolkit for technology-based STD and HIV Partner Services (IPS) serves as a general resource for health departments, community-based organizations (CBOs) and others authorized to provide HIV/STD partner services (PS).
- VCAmon – VCAmon is a computer-based application designed for stand-alone plotting of syphilis cases for visual case analysis (VCA) to assist those performing syphilis partner services and case management activities to identify all opportunities for disease intervention. (July 20, 2015)
Prevention Resources – CDC has a variety of resources available for HIV, Hepatitis, STD and TB partners.
- Partner Service Providers Quick GuideCdc-pdf – Updated 2014
- STD Picture Cards – Printable cards illustrating symptoms of STDs.
- STD*MIS – Data management application provided to state and local health departments, upon request.
- Expedited Partner Therapy (EPT) – The clinical practice of treating the sex partners of patients diagnosed with chlamydia or gonorrhea by providing prescriptions or medications to the patient to take to his/her partner without the health care provider first examining the partner.
- Webinar: From Partner Services to Field Services: The Evolving Role of Public Health Outreach to Control HIV/STDs – by Matthew Golden, MD, March 13, 2014, STD Prevention Science Series, View Recording