Saturday, 26 May, 2018

Reported Sexually Transmitted Diseases Reach a New High in California, Reports CDPH

Reported STD Cases Reach New High in California, Health Officials Find 2017 Calif. Public Health Report: Kern County among highest rates of STDs in state
Johnnie Parks | 16 May, 2018, 00:28

The most reported STD was chlamydia, with 218,710 cases reported in 2017.

"STDs are preventable by consistently using condoms, and many STDs can be cured with antibiotics", said CDPH Director Dr. Karen Smith. "Most people infected with an STD do not know it". "Regular testing and treatment are very important for people who are sexually active, even for people who have no symptoms".

Adding to the problem, says Dr. Heidi Bauer, chief of the state health department's STD Control Branch, is the fact that many Californians have been steered away from getting their health treatment at public clinics, and into private practice via the Affordable Care Act.

Female cases of syphilis increased early 7-fold from less than 250 early-cases reported in 2012. Officials with the San Francisco Department of Public Health believe recent advances in HIV prevention drugs may have led to an increase in unprotected sex in some communities, possibly increasing STD rates.

Common among young people aged 15-24, gonorrhea can cause infections in the genitals, rectum, and throat. Discharge, bleeding between periods, swollen testicles are some of the symptoms of gonorrhea. This was the highest number the state recorded since reporting began in 1990. As The Sacramento Bee reports, "Rates of chlamydia are highest among young women, while men account for the majority of syphilis and gonorrhea cases".

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"We've known how to control syphilis since early 1900's". You can get syphilis by having direct contact with a sore.

Kern County has the second highest number of babies born with congenital syphilis, according to the data. Untreated syphilis can lead to permanent vision loss, hearing, and other neurologic problems.

Reported instances of syphilis also increased.

The figure that caused the greatest alarm for researchers and administrators was 30 stillbirths resulting from congenital syphilis statewide - the highest number reported since 1995, the CDPH said. During an eight-week period in May and June, Public Health representatives will provide syphilis tutorials and assessments to more than 500 medical providers who serve patients at higher risk of syphilis and pregnant women.

As a result of the report, CDPH says it will collaborate with local health departments and organizations statewide to raise awareness.

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