13 Dec 2008

Many doctors don't know patient is gay

8:14 pm on 13 December 2008

A new study has found that one third of gay men have not told their doctor about their sexuality and sexual behaviour.

The study, published in the latest New Zealand Medical Journal, found many gay men perceive it as emotionally or physically risky or they were waiting to be specifically asked by their doctor.

The study discovered the majority of GPs assume their patient is hetrosexual unless told otherwise.

The Aids Foundation says this is risky as a GP's lack of patient knowledge could compromise diagnosis, treatment and overall health care.

The foundation says it's imperative all GP practices are welcoming of gay men as patients, as according to the study this was not always the case.