FSRH President celebrates 20 years of developing SRH clinical guidance

Posted 28 Mar 2023

Date: 28 Mar 2023

Author: Dr Janet Barter

In her latest blog of 2023, FSRH President Dr Janet Barter celebrates 20 years of the FSRH Clinical Effectiveness Unit (CEU), discusses the upcoming plans for the year and celebrates the recent release of the latest HIV antiretroviral therapy and contraception drug interaction guidance.

2023 marks 20 years of our FSRH Clinical Effectiveness Unit (CEU), celebrating two decades of promoting high-quality, evidence-based clinical practice. The output the CEU provides is an essential part of the FSRH brand and offer, working to promote evidence-based clinical practice and providing research and clinical support.

The CEU produces a range of evidence-based clinical guidance documents, including the NICE-accredited FSRH Clinical Guidelines. In 2023, we will be publishing  new guidance, including the intrauterine contraception (IUC) Guidelines due to be published in spring.

The CEU have already released new guidance regarding Drug Interactions Between HIV Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) and Contraception. In this new guidance, there is a focus on drug-drug interactions (DDIs) between HIV antiretroviral therapy (ART) and contraception to facilitate the prescription of safe and effective contraception to people living with HIV and on ART. The guidance includes summaries of the evidence available to inform our understanding of HIV-contraception DDIs, easy-to-use Quick Reference Tables that provide information on known and potential drug interactions for each contraceptive method, including emergency contraception, by class and type of antiretroviral drug, as well as indicating when there are no concerns about drug interactions. As a busy clinician, I use the FSRH guidance daily, as I am sure that most of you do too. It is a source of great pride for FSRH that our guidance is respected and used across many settings in UK and abroad.

The bulk of the CEU’s work for the upcoming year will be updating the UK Medical Eligibility Criteria (UKMEC). A steering group of experts have been appointed and systematic literature reviews are underway. I know how critical the UKMEC is to our clinical work and look forward to the update.

When they’re not working on the UKMEC update, the CEU team will be presenting sessions at the FSRH - BASHH joint conference and the FSRH Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM). The team will also be presenting on FSRH Guidance at other national and international conferences throughout the year. As we have seen this week, they also respond rapidly with evidence-based advice for us, the members, when new research is published that may affect our day-to-day practice. We are extremely grateful to them for this.