Health officials in Southern California are worried about rising STD rates, especially syphilis. The disease was thought to be under control a short decade ago, but it made a comeback in recent years.
Health officials say that people have become lax about using condoms, especially since the AIDS scare has abated due to modern treatments that make the virus less of a death sentence than it was in the ‘80s. But PEP and PrEP do not prevent the spread of other STDs, and condoms must still be used. Especially tragic are the cases of congenital syphilis, which cause stillbirths. If the baby lives, it can have permanent damage.
In 2015, there were 6,175 people living with HIV or AIDS in Orange County, with a prevalence rate of 233 per 100K people, under California’s rate of 376.
In 2017, 14,027 people in Orange County were diagnosed with chlamydia, at a rate of 438.2 per 100K people, under California’s rate of 552.2. The gonorrhea and (primary and secondary) syphilis rates were 111.7 and 11.5.
There’s a Planned Parenthood at Nutmeg Pl. They test for STIs and treat all except HIV, and the fee is on a sliding scale. At least one charitable clinic offers free STD testing, but only for HIV and hep C. MedPost Urgent Care of Costa Mesa, on Harbor Blvd, provides STD testing and treatment.