The Healthcare Commission has asked GP practices to routinely record who uses their sexual health services in order to better target funds for those who need them most.
The Commission has revealed that gaps in its databank make it hard to track progress and improvements in sexual health services.
As a result, the commission says services do not know where to allocate resources.
The Department of Health and its partners are already developing a common data set for sexual health, but primary care services are also being asked to collect information from those who visit with sexual health queries.
This includes patients’ age, gender, ethnicity and address in line with nationally agreed guidelines.
The Healthcare Commission Head of Public Health Jude Williams said: “We know that sexual ill health is a significant problem in England.
“In order to identify problem areas, a specific, detailed and consistent data set on sexual health is urgently needed.
“It is vital that everyone involved in sexual health services, from the government through to those providing frontline services, makes improving data collection and using that data to deliver effective services, a top priority.”