06/01/2015 01:46 EDT | Updated 06/01/2016 05:59 EDT

First gay men's sexual health clinic in Fraser Valley opens in Abbotsford

A new clinic in Abbotsford, B.C., is offering counseling, testing for HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections, free condoms and health promotion for men who have sex with men. It is the first clinic of its kind in Abbotsford. 

Dr. Michelle Murti, the medical health officer for the Fraser Health Authority, says demand for the services in the Fraser Valley has been increasing.

"We're trying to make sure that we're covering that region and population to be able to make things a little bit more accessible to people, especially in that rural area," she told Rick Cluff on CBC Radio One's The Early Edition.

A recent survey of gay men in the region conducted by Fraser Health showed that 75 per cent have family doctors, but many were reluctant to discuss their sex lives with them.

"Even the ones who did have a family doctor, about a third said that they weren't talking to their doctor about how they do have sex with men," she said.

"So we know that ... there's still a need for providing this very specialized and tailored service for these people."

Initially, the clinic will only be open Monday nights from 5:30 to 9:00, but Murti said Fraser Health will consider expanding the service if demand is high. The new clinic is located at 34194 Marshall Rd. in Abbotsford.

To hear the full interview with Dr. Michelle Murti, listen to the audio labelled: Gay men's sexual health clinic opens in Abbotsford.