Visiting a Brook Centre

Brook’s online clinic gives you a wider choice of how to get help and advice from Brook. It doesn’t replace our Brook services around the country, which offer a wide range of sexual health, advice and contraception services to young people under 25.

Brook’s service is free and confidential. This means when you visit our services or use the online clinic we won’t tell anyone outside Brook without your permission, including your parents, and even your doctor. See ‘Will you tell my parents I've been’ below for more information about this.

Find your nearest Brook service and check their opening hours.

Visiting a Brook service: your questions answered

Before you visit a Brook service, you may feel anxious and have lots of questions. We’ve answered some commonly asked questions below.

Do I need an appointment?

Brook services operate on a ‘drop in’ basis. Check the hours of your nearest Brook service, and call in when it suits you. Some services can offer you an appointment too. You may also need an appointment to see a counsellor or a doctor, so it's best to call first and check they’ll be there when you visit.

Will you tell my parents I've been?

No. We won't even tell your doctor without your permission. Even if you’re under 16, your visit will be confidential. We might encourage you to talk to a parent or carer about your visit if you can.

In exceptional circumstances, for example if we think that you or another young person is at serious risk of immediate harm, we would try to put you in touch with services that can help. In the most exceptional circumstances we may need to make a decision to breach confidentiality, in order to protect you or another young person.

Click here for More information about confidentiality and your rights

Do I have to pay?

No. All Brook’s services are free.

Will I need an internal examination?

You don't normally need an internal examination on your first visit. You may need one in the future, if you’re having an IUD fitted, for example, or for some (but not all) sexually transmitted infection checks.

Can I bring a partner or friend with me?

Of course. It's always good to have support.  We’ll always talk to you on your own first though, to make sure you’re not doing anything you don’t want to do, or being persuaded to get contraception when you don’t want to.

After your initial confidential chat, your partner or friend is welcome to sit with you while you talk to one of our health professionals, if you would like them to.

Can I see someone on my own, or do I have to have my parent/carer with me?

It's fine to see someone on your own – you don't need a parent or carer with you, even if you're under-16.

What happens when I get there?

We’ll welcome you and ask you a few questions in confidence. If you’re anxious about telling us the reason you’ve come to see us, you can ask to speak to someone in a private room. Most services also have a system where you can point to a sheet of paper, which shows the services Brook provides rather than having to ask out loud.

At some services you can see a counsellor for a chat, to talk through your concerns or problems, and find out what sort of advice you need.

If you want contraception, you’ll see a doctor or a nurse – sometimes both. They will ask you some health questions, and discuss contraceptive methods with you to help fine the one that is most suitable.

The doctor or nurse will talk to you about the importance of using condoms to help you and your partner avoid sexually transmitted infections (STIs). They'll make sure you know how to put a condom on correctly. Depending on the method, they might be able to give you supplies of your chosen contraception to take away that day.

What if I forget to ask something?

Brook is always here for you if you want to ask a question, have a chat, or get more supplies. Just drop in to your local Brook service or contact us in any of these ways.

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