Additional STD Test Statistics in Bellingham, WA
Whatcom County Health Department released statistics that show STDs in the area are rising. This includes HIV, Herpes, HPV, Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, along with all types of Syphilis.
There is also some good news for the area, Hepatitis B and C incidents have dramatically decreased in recent years.
Herpes and HPV diagnoses are also more common, especially among young men. Guys are also testing positive more often for Gonorrhea, while Chlamydia incidents are highest in women.
The statistics also show that sexually transmitted diseases can affect anyone, regardless of age or ethnicity.
- From 1994 – 2013 the Chlamydia rates almost doubled in females ages 15 to 24.
- The county reported an infection rate of 34.5 for Genital Herpes in 2013, versus the state’s at 32.1.
- In 2013 there were 60 cases of Gonorrhea reported, compared to less than 40 in 2012.
STD Testing and Sexual Health Education in Bellingham, WA
State lawmakers recently passed a bill that revamps the current sex education policy. While rumors and misprints have led to some outrage by parents and school administrators, overall the new guidelines are designed to ensure students receive information that is relevant and medically accurate.
The main changes deal with gender identity, and the new curriculum does not promote sexually activity. Abstinence is still encouraged, only now students will have access to some of the information they need to understand the changes taking place in their bodies as they go through puberty. Law makers are hopeful that not only will this help prevent “bullying” simply because a student is different, but that it will also enable them to make smart decisions when it comes to being sexually active.
Since the new curriculum won’t be implemented until the start of the 2017 school year, it is too soon to tell if these changes are having a positive effect on the area’s high STD and teen pregnancy rates.
Even with these changes the state’s sex education policy is still lacking in some areas. The importance of always using condoms during intercourse is only discussed if a student has the courage to ask, and unfortunately most don’t. This means that even though the majority of high school students are sexually active, according to recent surveys, most are not using protection.
STD Clinic Information in Bellingham, WA
Regular Herpes testing in Bellingham is the best way to prevent the spread of the contagious virus. Regular HIV testing in Bellingham is critical for everyone’s continued good health.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Demographics in Bellingham, WA
Budget cuts to health care in recent years are being blamed for the rise in the city’s STD rates. The small city only had a few community health centers, and the loss of funding has caused some of them to close their doors. Without a convenient place to get tested, many residents are simply ignoring this important part of their health care routine.
Adding to residents’ difficulties in getting tested is the fact that it is no longer covered under Medicaid. This means that many residents on fixed incomes simply cannot afford to take care of their sexual health. As long as everyone doesn’t have easy access to the health care they need, the number of STDs reported each year will continue to rise.
These are only a few of the factors affecting the STD rates, and until they are all resolved everyone’s sexual health will be in risk.
Better Sexual Health in Bellingham, WA
Free HIV clinics and mobile STD testing are two ways you can have your status checked, but they do come with some downsides. Privacy is almost nonexistent, since it’s obvious why you stopped in. On the other hand, STI clinics can usually give you same day results in an environment that is discreet. Often taking appointments on weekends, even with no insurance, why don’t you stop in on your way to Lummi Island?