SOARING sexual transmitted disease rates have led to a new sexual health clinic being opened in Rowley Regis.

The walk-in clinic at Rowley Regis Hospital will offer sexual health screening and counselling for men and women.

The latest Public Heath England sexual health statistics revealed Sandwell is a "high prevalance" area.

Alexandra Louise Young, senior sexual health nurse at Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust, outlined the importance of the new clinic.

She said: "Sexual Health is an important aspect of our general health and with infection rates soaring, it is important that we take note and get ourselves tested regularly.

“Recent statistics from Public Health England have shown that one in every 404 people in the Sandwell area are living with HIV, making it a ‘high prevalence’ area.

She added: This makes it even more crucial that we reach more people and by opening a clinic at Rowley Regis Hospital we hope that it will help us achieve this.”

The team will be working alongside Family Planning at Rowley Regis Hospital to make sure both are covered with screening advice and contraception.

Miss Young added: “We are now reaching further afield from our base at Dartmouth Clinic in Sandwell Hospital.

“We hope that patients find it beneficial that we are providing a walk-in clinic which they can attend after finishing work.”

The latest Public Health England sexual transmitted diseases statistics revealed there were nearly half a million cases of STDs in England in 2012, a rise of five per cent from the previous year's figures.

Walk-in clinics are still available at Dartmouth Clinic in Sandwell Hospital, Mondays 1.30pm-3.30 and Tuesdays to Thursdays from 1pm until 3.30pm.

Patients can also call to book appointments on 0121 507 3094.