DCSA

Darwin College Students' Association

Sexual Health

Emergency Contraception
If you have had unprotected sex and need the (free) emergency contraceptive pill or an emergency intrauterine device (IAD) fitted then contact one of the following:
  • Lime Tree Clinic (sexual health clinic), 351 Mill Road, 0300 300 3030
  • See the NHS help page and/or iCASH for further details on the emergency contraceptive pill and the option of fitting a IAD.
  • Your GP
  • Certain Cambridge pharmacies, but you must be registered with a Cambridge GP. Speak to the pharmacist about the contraceptive pill. These pharmacies include: 
    • Boots, Newmarket Road
    • Boots, Cherry Hinton Road
    • Boots, Grafton Centre
    • Boots, Petty Cury
    • Kays Chemist, Wulfstan Way
    • Lloyds, Arbury Court
    • Lloyds, Trumpington Street
    • Co-operative, Barnwell Road
    • Superdrug, Fitzroy Street
    • Superdrug, Sidney Street
It is very important that you take emergency contraception as soon as possible as its effectiveness decreases over time.
 
If more than 72 hours have passed, the emergency contraception pill will no longer be effective. However, it is still possible to prevent a pregnancy by having an IUD fitted. This needs to be done by a medical professional within five days of unprotected sex and can be done at the Lime Tree Clinic or other sexual health clinic. 
 
If you think you may have been exposed to HIV, through unprotected penetrative or oral sex, it is possible to receive a drug treatment that will reduce your chances to develop the disease. This treatment is more effective the sooner you take it and therefore you need to see a specialist as soon as possible. Contact the Lime Tree Clinic for advice. 
 
If you think you might be pregnant, you can request a free pregnancy test from DCSA Welfare Officers or CUSU. You will receive it in your pigeonhole in an unmarked envelope. If you find that you are pregnant, there are several options – find more information here.
 
Remember that, whether you choose to continue or terminate your pregnancy, there is support for you should you need it. You can contact the DCSA Welfare Officers, the Dean/your tutor, or CUSU. The University can grant you an intermission in your coursework for maternity leave or medical reasons if you need it to complete your degree.
 
Contraception
All forms of contraception are available for free in the UK. For some of them, such as the Pill, you will need a doctor's prescription, as they are incompatible with certain health issues. It is always a good idea to discuss your choice of contraception with your GP and decide what is most convenient and appropriate for you. The different kinds of contraception methods and their relative advantages and disadvantages are explained on the NHS and FPA websites.
 
The Welfare Officer have free condoms and the aim to keep the machines in the main College toilets stocked up. You are welcome to take advantage of it, but please be realistic and mindful of your fellow students in need. If you find they've run out then let us know. Other options, including latex-free, female condoms and dental dams, are available from CUSU.
 
STIs
If you are sexually active, it's a good idea to have regular sexual health screens, even if you are not experiencing any symptoms. Many sexually-transmitted infections give subtle or no symptoms but can sometimes cause long-lasting health issues – however, they can be treated and the earlier the better. The local sexual health clinic is the Lime Tree Clinic. You can find more information on STIs on the NHS and FPA websites.
 
Sexual Assault
If you have been a victim of sexual assault, call 999. There are specially trained police officers who can assist you and support you in reporting a sexual offence, collecting the necessary evidence and arrange for medical help if required.
 
If you feel you would benefit from going to a safe place where you can receive support, the Oasis Centre in Peterborough is the sexual assault referral centre for Cambridgeshire. You will find advisors who can give advice and further referral if required. If you can't or don't want to go to Peterborough, you can still call their helpline on 0845 089 6262 which is active 24/7 and ask for further advice. You can also contact the local charity, the Cambridge Rape Crisis Centre, which takes phone calls on 01223 245888 every Wednesday from 7.30-9.30pm.
 
If you feel you have been sexually harassed or have been made to feel uncomfortable in the College or by College members, please let the Deanery or the Welfare Officers know. It is important that the College is a safe and comfortable place for all members.
 
Safety
Cambridge is generally a safe city, but this doesn't mean that crime and assault don't happen, especially in dark and isolated areas. If you feel uncomfortable, especially late at night, a personal attack alarm may be useful, which you can get from CUSU.
 
It is very important that the College is a safe and welcoming place for all its members. If you experience or become aware of harassing, threatening or abusive behaviours on College grounds or by any College members, please let the Deanery and the Welfare Officers know.
 
More Information
You can find information about sex, sexual health and relationships on the NHS choices website and from the Family Planning Association, a national family planning and sexual health charity.  If you have questions, doubts or you'd simply like to talk something over, feel free to contact the Welfare Officers or CUSU
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