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STI Screening Clinics

Take care of your sexual health!

Dalhousie Student Health & Wellness provides free* and confidential screenings for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) right on Halifax campus to Dalhousie and King's students. 

Our nurses at the Student Health & Wellness Centre or at our mobile screening clinics can administer the following STI tests:

  • Males: can be tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea through a urine test and/or a throat swab.
  • Females: can be tested for chlamydia and gonorrhea through a vaginal swab test and/or a throat swab.

We understand that an individual's gender identity may not be the same as their biological sex or that their biological sex may be a mixture of masculine and feminine characteristics. However, to ensure that the screening is accurate if a person's biological sex is female, a swab must be used. If a person's biological sex is male, a urine sample cup must be used.

Upcoming clinics 

  • Wed, Sept, 14, 12-3pm, LeMarchant Place Atrium
  • Tues, Sept. 20 11am-2pm, LeMarchant Place Atrium
  • Thurs, Sept. 22, 12-3pm, Collaborative Health Education Building (CHEB), First Floor (Carleton)
  • Wed, Sept. 28, 10am-1pm, Melda Murray Student Centre (Sexton)
  • Wed, Oct. 5, 1:30-3:30pm, Wilson Common Room, Kings 
  • Wed, Oct. 12, 11am-2pm, LeMarchant Place Atrium
  • Wed, Oct. 19, 12-3pm, LeMarchant Place Atrium 
  • Wed, Nov. 23, 11am-2pm, LeMarchant Place Atrium
  • Wed, Nov. 30, 11am-1pm, Melda Murray Student Centre (Sexton)

What to expect

  • You will be required to bring and wear a mask while at the mobile clinic. Social distancing rules will apply. 
  • You will check-in and fill out a registration form (don't forget your health card).
  • A nurse will review your form with you and give you your sample collectors.
  • You will go to your room or a washroom to collect your sample (you do it yourself).
  • You will return to the clinic and give your sample to the nurse.

Note: If your result is positive, you will receive notification from the Student Health & Wellness Centre and be invited back for a confidential appointment to get treatment.

Can’t attend a mobile clinic and/or located in Truro? 

Drop by one of Dal's health clinics to get tested by a nurse or book an appointment.

If you require anal swabbing or bloodwork for Hep C, HIV and syphilis, a doctor’s visit is required. Please book an appointment with a doctor at one of Dal's health clinics.

Is it covered by my insurance? 

STI screening at the Centre by a physician is covered by most health plans.

*If you have a Canadian provincial health card, testing is covered by your province. You must have your health card with you to register for the STI clinic, otherwise we are unable to process the request.

If you are an international student or have private health care coverage, please contact your provider PRIOR to attending the clinics to ensure appropriate coverage. Please be aware that if you are not covered by your health plan, you may be sent a bill from the laboratory. 

DSU International Student Health Plan covers 2 tests per year (Fall/Winter).

Why should I get tested?

The majority of STIs are asymptomatic, which means that there are no signs, but there are possible consequences, including:

  • Scarring
  • Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
  • Infertility
  • Blood vessel, heart, eye or brain damage
  • Increased risk of acquiring HPV
  • Increased risk of cancer

Note: A Pap test is not the same thing as an STI check. You will need to book an appointment with a doctor if you want just a Pap test, or if you want both a Pap and STI check.

You can book a nursing appointment or visit a mobile STI Screening Clinic for just an STI test. Typically, we do STI checks with all Paps, but you can always have just one of these tests if you’d prefer.

Blood Testing

Student Health & Wellness Centre in Halifax and Health Services in Truro can provide requisitions for HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and syphilis through blood work in locations across Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM). They are antibody tests. This means that they measure your immune system’s response to the virus, not the virus itself. 
If you think you may have been exposed to HIV, you should book an appointment to get tested after the potential exposure (e.g., unprotected vaginal or anal sex; unsafe tattooing; sharing equipment for IV drug use; sharing other drug paraphernalia such as straws/bills/crack pipes, etc.). 
If you think you may have been exposed to hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and/or syphilis, you should book an appointment to get tested after the potential exposure. Even if your test is negative, it may be a good idea to come back for follow-up testing as these viruses/bacteria can take longer than 4 weeks to cause changes in your body that we can measure. 
Testing for blood-borne pathogens (HIV, hepatitis, and syphilis) without previous risk (baseline testing) can be done at any time.

What We Cannot Test For 

Currently, there is no blood test available in Nova Scotia to detect human papillomavirus (HPV – the virus that causes genital warts and cervical cancer). 
Pap tests screen for cervical cell changes that can be caused by strains of HPV. Therefore, if someone has abnormal Pap test results, it is a good indication that they are carrying a strain of HPV. Currently, in Nova Scotia, we do not offer testing to detect early cell changes in the anus/rectum or throat caused by HPV. 
HPV can be diagnosed visually (warts), but clients need to have a symptom in order to be diagnosed by a doctor. Anyone who ever notices any unusual lumps, bumps, blisters, etc. on their genitals should call their family doctor or our clinic to arrange an appointment as soon as possible. 
If someone has symptoms of herpes simplex virus (HSV), such as genital blisters or a cold sore, we can swab it and send the sample to the lab for confirmation. However, there is no blood test available in Nova Scotia to detect HSV. In other words, if you do not have any symptoms, we are unable to do any testing that would allow us to tell you whether or not you are carrying the virus.