Arizona state law does not require education pertaining to STI’s and HIV/AIDS. Local school officials decide whether to implement sexual education. If sexual health education is taught, abstinence must be the focal point. If a school decides to discuss HIV, their curriculum must be medically accurate. A child must have their parent’s permission to take any form of sexual health class.
An organization called Advocates for Arizona is pushing for sexual health education in all schools. Their primary stance is that young people that were either born in, or after the 80’s are the first generation to live in a world where AIDS is a common topic of discussion. They also believe that it does not need to be something to fear so long as it is discussed and handled properly.
Planned Parenthood is also fiercely active in the fight for a more prominent sexual health education program within the state. The University of Arizona has been working closely with Planned Parenthood to empower the community with knowledge pertaining to sexual health.
Within the university there are several health promotion programs. One such program is the Condom Club which offers 30 free condoms a semester to students. They also offer STI testing on campus as well as information pertaining the prevention and treatment of STI’s and HIV/AIDS.
On their website, the University of Arizona also offers basic information about sexual health and well-being as well as other websites they recommend for more in-depth information. They break their information up into sections, which is helpful if an individual is looking for specific answers. Finally, they offer recommendations outside of the university for those who are not students or who live further away.
There are many locations within Flagstaff that provide STI testing. It is recommended that you call ahead to confirm whether you will be required to make an appointment as well as to inquire what form (if any) of insurance they take. Many places allow you to walk in. When you call you can also verify that they offer the test you require. For example, some clinics may test for HIV but not Gonorrhea.
One location that provides testing is the NextCare Urgent care in Flagstaff. Their hours are Monday through Friday 8:00 am through 8:00 pm. They provide a service through which you can check-in online in order to save time. They accept Medicare, Aetna, Medicare RR and AHCCCS.
A second location is the Flagstaff Health Center. Here, you can schedule online and the offices have individuals who specialize in speaking Spanish in order to help those who do not speak English. They provide both HIV and STI testing. They are open Mondays and Wednesdays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Thursdays from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm, and Fridays from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.
The Department of Health Services of Flagstaff provides HIV and STI testing services as well. Testing, treatment and counseling are offered for all major STI’s and HIV/AIDS. HIV testing is available free of charge. There is assistance for those who cannot afford the treatment of AIDS through the Ryan White Part B HIV Case Management Program.
Dr. Steve McCrosky of the North Country Healthcare Medical Group specializes in treating patients dealing with HIV/AIDS. Dr. McCrosky accepts Medicare and it is requested you call if you have private insurance. If you are uninsured there is a sliding scale they use to determine cost. Patients can make appointments online.
There is a Planned Parenthood in Flagstaff. They are opened Mondays and Wednesdays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Thursdays from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm, and Fridays from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. They accept Blue Cross / Blue Shield and CMDP. If an individual is uninsured they may qualify for state assistance. Among other things, they provide testing for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, HIV and Syphilis.
An individual will usually be required to give a urine sample. Many STI tests also require a genital exam. Rapid HIV testing can be done through a blood sample taken with a finger stick. If tests results come back positive, there is counseling available for both the patient and their partner.
The community of Flagstaff in Arizona seems fiercely adamant that they will provide testing and treatment for the population it has that has been affected by STI’s and HIV/AIDS. While there has been an increase in STI’s, this does not seem to be from a lack of information provided from a community and medical setting. Educational curriculum supports and advocates abstinence, while also promoting being smart when becoming sexually active. The downside with the educational system could be that it does actively promote requiring curriculum pertaining to sexual health. The local Planned Parenthood as well as Arizona University provides both treatment and counseling to those in need of it. There are also several local clinics where testing and treatment is provided. Demographics and statistics suggest that American Indians and males who are sexually active with other males are most likely to contract an STI. Regardless of the statistics, the best way to prevent STI’s is to either remain abstinent or practice safe sex with your partner. Flagstaff also provides several online resources that help educate about STI’s. One of which is: