Each STD clinic, private physician and hospital submits regular testing results reports. The data that is forwarded includes demographic information such as gender, ethnicity and age, omitting names and other identifying information so confidentiality is maintained. The information helps to establish target groups for educational materials that may help to slow down the spread of these diseases.
- Chlamydia- 475
- Gonorrhea- 127.7
Reviewing the data over the past decade reveals that the numbers for infection with Chlamydia has increased along with a nine percent increase in Gonorrhea and 7.3 percent in Syphilis. This creates an impetus to step up the efforts to slow the spread of these diseases in the region.
Efforts on the part of local officials include the mandatory inclusion of sexual health education which is infused into the public school curriculum. High numbers of positive tests for Chlamydia show that there is a great need for reaching these young people with factual information about the dangers and consequences of unprotected sexual activity. In addition to this, students are told where to go for a Herpes test or for HIV testing in the area.
CDC reports generated for the Corpus Christi, TX area show that there are definite trends in the characteristics of groups which have the highest rates of infection for particular sexually transmitted diseases. Any time a person engages in unsafe sex, there is a risk, but the numbers show that certain groupings of persons test positive more than others.
Chlamydia rates are the highest in females over males. Those in the 20 to 24 age group have the highest incidences followed by 15 to 19 and 25 to 20. Hispanic women are the highest with regard to ethnicity with Black and then White. Trends also show an increase in the number of males who engage in male to male sex testing positive for Chlamydia.
Gonorrhea rates are also at a nine percent increase with males testing positive more than females. Age groups with the highest numbers are 20 to 24 followed by 15 to 19, then 25 to 29 for this area. Syphilis infections have gone up by 7.3 percent. These statistics combine all types of Syphilis including primary, secondary and late stages.
It is believed that high poverty rates in the area have an impact on risk factors. A lack of education about sexually transmitted diseases along with limited financial resources can make finding quality health care for testing and treatment more difficult. Although free clinics exist to provide free or reduced rates for testing, they are subject to funding availability which means that some persons in need of testing may have to wait, further spreading infection.
Even though the public schools are making every effort to educate youth about the realities of sexually transmitted diseases, the numbers of positive cases of every type of STD is steadily rising. More needs to be done to help curb the epidemic that is occurring in high school aged children.
Corpus Christi, TX faces a strong challenge for turning the tide on sexually transmitted diseases in the local community. More testing is needed and this means providing more intense educational campaigns along with increased funding for free clinics. This will help to ensure that everyone who is at risk for contracting an STD will have the knowledge about where to go for help, and the resources to obtain quality health care for treatment options.
As it stands, there are viable resources available for the majority of the population. This beautiful community has so much to offer its residents in terms of fun in the sun, entertainment and sexual health care.