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Partner notification (PN) is an essential element of sexually transmitted infection (STI) control. It enables identification, treatment and advice for sexual contacts who may benefit from additional preventive interventions such as HIV pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis. PN is most effective in reducing STI transmission when it reaches individuals who are most likely to have an STI and to engage in sexual behaviour that facilitates STI transmission, including having multiple and/or new sex partners. Outcomes of PN practice need to be measurable in order to inform standards. They need to address all five stages in the cascade of care: elicitation of partners, establishing contactable partners, notification, testing and treatment. In the United Kingdom, established outcome measures cover only the first three stages and do not take into account the type of sexual partnership. We report an evidence-based process to develop new PN outcomes and inform standards of care. We undertook a systematic literature review, evaluation of published information on types of sexual partnership and a modified Delphi process to reach consensus. We propose six new PN outcome measures at five stages of the cascade, including stratification by sex partnership type. Our framework for PN outcome measurement has potential to contribute in other domains, including Covid-19 contact tracing.


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