Hampshire County Health Department is achieving positive results in the fight against HIV/STD infections.
Health reports indicate that HIV infections in Amherst Center dropped from 11 cases at a rate of 7.7 per 100,000 persons in 2011 to 5 at 3.5 in 2015.
Chlamydia infections also declined from 355 cases at 220.7 in 2013 to 322 cases at 199.6 in 2015.
Similarly, Syphilis cases fell to 3 at 1.9 in 2015 from 10 cases at 6.2 in 2013.
Meanwhile, Gonorrhea infections increased to 48 at 29.8 in 2015 from 38 cases at 23.6 in 2013.
The Hampshire County Health Department has integrated HIV/STD testing and screening in the county at a subsidized screening rate to increase HIV/STD diagnosis by 85 percent and ensure all infected persons are linked to care. HIV/STD counseling and testing are done at a group and individual levels. With more testing, preventive education, and distribution of preventive resources such as PrEP pills, the departments target a reduction of STD infections by 20 percent.
Planned Parenthood- Western Massachusetts Health Center and AEIOU Occupational & Urgent Health Care are some of the walk-in facilities where you can get HIV/STD testing and treatment. Other clinics with the same services include Valley Medical Group and US Veterans Medical Care.
You can also find testing services at some of the clinics in Amherst that offer free STD testing, but you may be required to make an upfront payment, and not all STDs are tested for free.