GUM Clinics

Sexually active gay men should have regular sexual health check-ups at a sexual health or GUM clinic. If you think you have been exposed to HIV or an STI then it’s important to get yourself checked out at a clinic as soon as possible.

The NHS provides over 30 GUM (Genito-Urinary Medicine) clinics across London, offering free HIV testing and sexual health screening. Details of these can be found in this section via the interactive menu on the left. Clinics are listed according to areas of London.

Below is a brief explanation which should help you understand the way GU services in London generally work. We suggest you read this first before attending a clinic.

If you're unsure if you need a GU clinic or don't know where to go, take our short survey to assess your sexual health needs:


Understanding GU Services

Most clinics have health advisors who can talk to you about any worries you have about your sex life. They will also be able to advise you on what vaccinations are available and help you decide whether it is a good idea for you to take an HIV test.

There is no need to feel embarrassed about going to a sexual health clinic. The staff in the clinics are professionals who are trained and expected to treat you with sensitivity and respect. Services are confidential, but if you still want to use a false name you can do so.

All general GU clinics will offer gay men Hepatitis B vaccination and many will also vaccinate you against Hepatitis A.

Making an appointment

At most clinics you need to call to book an appointment. It usually takes about a week before you can get an appointment, although this will vary from clinic to clinic. Saying you are a gay man may get you an earlier appointment. Most appointment times are during the day, although some clinics offer an 'after hours' service. Be warned, as with booked appointments in a doctor's surgery, sometimes you'll find you still have to wait for quite some time before they can see you, so best to allow some leeway if you're taking time off work.

Walk-in services

As a general rule, if you want to use a walk-in service rather than wait for an appointment, it is advisable to arrive at the clinic as early as possible. Walk-in space gets booked up very quickly and some clinics open their doors half an hour before they actually begin to see patients in order to allocate the available walk in space on a first come first served basis. Call in advance to check with the clinic you wish to visit or if in doubt get to the clinic 30 minutes before the clinic start time. Also be prepared to spend at least two hours in the clinic waiting, even if you do get there early.

Changes to services provided

Please note that services change over time and it can take quite a while before notices, leaflets, recorded messages and websites are updated. For this reason we strongly recommend that you call the clinic you wish to visit before doing so, to ensure that their services are still operating as advertised. We do our best to keep the information provided here up to date, but if you do find services that are no longer operating as advertised, we would be grateful if you would inform us by clicking on the ‘Feedback on this page’ button underneath the left hand menu.