With innovations in science and technology, it comes at a surprise that STDs have been on the rise in California since the early 2000s. Sacramento itself had the 6th highest chlamydia rates in California’s 58 counties. But with other issues such as teen pregnancy at an all time low, why is this issue becoming more and more prevalent?
A decrease in condom usage, as well as a lack of knowledge are part of the issue. Another part of the issue is the funding for prevention. It’s theorized that after the 2008 financial crisis, funding for many programs got cut. However, funding for STD prevention never seemed to recover.
“Increases in STDs are a clear warning of a growing threat,” said Dr. Jonathan Mermin, director of CDC’s National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention. “STDs are a persistent enemy, growing in number, and outpacing our ability to respond.”
Though some STDs are treatable, their symptoms are sometimes hard to detect, leaving the victim to not be aware of the STD until it gets worse. 600 cases nationwide of congenital syphilis were reported in 2016, and over 40 newborn deaths and health complications resulted from it.
“Every baby born with syphilis represents a tragic systems failure,” said Gail Bolan, director of CDC’s Division of STD Prevention. “All it takes is a simple STD test and antibiotic treatment to prevent this enormous heartache and help assure a healthy start for the next generation of Americans.”
Access to knowledge about STDs may be needed to help prevent them from spreading more. The more knowledge people have about STDs, the sooner they can identify its symptoms and get help.