STD Rates Keep Rising in Washington State

ABC News Chart Illustration

ABC News Chart Illustration Chart

The number of US residents diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection (STI) hit a record high in 2018, with nearly 2.46 million reported cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and other STIs, according to a CDC report released Tuesday. Of the more than 115,000 syphilis cases in the USA last year, the CDC found that more than 1,300 of them involved newborns who were born with the disease - that is a massive 40-percent increase over the previous year.

Louisiana was ranked #7 in the nation for primary and secondary syphilis case rates, declining from #3 in 2017; #3 in congenital syphilis, declining from #1 in 2017; and #5 in gonorrhea, declining from #3 in 2017.


"From 2014 to 2018, 23 cases of congenital syphilis were reported; this compares to only 13 cases reported from 1995 to 2013."

". "That progress has since unraveled".

Among these, chlamydia is the most commonly reported; with rates being highest in 20 to 24-year-old women. Congenital syphilis is transmitted from mother to newborn child.

Virginia Bowen, an epidemiologist at the CDC, said social, cultural and economic factors may contribute to increases in reported STD cases.

And, we came in at a close number 3, behind Texas and Nevada in cases of Congenital Syphilis. Those five states together made up almost two-thirds of total cases, although all but 17 states saw increases in their congenital syphilis rates.

$40 million over four years to enhance the capacity of local health departments to identify, monitor and respond to communicable diseases.

"It's very concerning", said John Swartzberg, clinical professor emeritus at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health.

According to Hertin, increasing access to testing remains is a priority. David Harvey, executive director of the group, said there is an STI "crisis" in the United States "because prevention programs were sold short for years".

Harvey added, "ST [I] s have real health and human costs. Without a radical shift in how we prioritize sexual health in the United States, we can only expect things to get worse" (Borter, Reuters, 10/8; Hellmann, The Hill, 10/8; AP/Modern Healthcare, 10/8; Barry-Jester, Kaiser Health News, 10/8).

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