The Ayrshire and Arran Blood Borne Virus Service is based at University Hospital Crosshouse. The BBV unit within the hospital was purpose-built in 2011 and offers a confidential, holistic service for all those affected by a BBV. The unit was designed to provide the best level of care while allowing the service user to feel comfortable, relaxed and safe in the knowledge that they are being treated by a specialist team who has the patient's welfare at the heart of everything they do. The unit provides specialist treatment and assessment for HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C. This includes Specialist Dietetic input, Specialist Pharmacy input, FibroScans, sexual health screens and condoms, vaccinations and the most appropriate medication regimens available.
Initial referral to the Ayrshire and Arran BBV Service is generally through GP/Addiction Services/In and Out-patient services. Referrals are accepted from all avenues. Referrals are accepted by the Consultant and also by the Clinical Nurse Specialists. Once patients are referred to the service, they are assessed for the most suitable treatment options or monitored closely on a regular basis. Should patients develop any new symptoms or are concerned about any changes in their condition then we ask that they contact us directly. If the changes are as a result of side-effects associated with BBV treatment, support should be sought from the patients GP.
Blood borne viruses remain a very under-diagnosed group of infections - it is estimated that a quarter of people with HIV and two-thirds of people with Hepatitis C are unaware of their infections. If people are diagnosed earlier, treatment is often more successful and onward transmission could be prevented.
Testing is available in a range of different settings including GP practices, Sexual Health clinics, Addiction services. These are all detailed in NHS Ayrshire and Arran's BBV Testing Guideline