On a list of the most sexually diseased cities in the US, Florence ranks at #52, and South Carolina in general has some of the highest STD rates in the country. Budget cuts to the public health sector have hurt the South, which has, on average, higher poverty rates than the rest of the country.
Many people have to travel to find a clinic, so transportation problems and consequences of missed working hours can prevent them from actually doing so. Social stigma is also a very real problem.
In 2016, the HIV prevalence rate in Florence County was 652.9 per 100K people, above South Carolina’s rate of 400.7. The chlamydia rate was 739.4 per 100K people, in comparison with the South Carolina rate of 575.5. The gonorrhea and (primary and secondary) syphilis rates were 261.3 and 7.9.
At least one clinic in the area provides free STD testing, but only for HIV and hep C. There may be a wait for these services. The Florence County Public Health clinic at East Cheves St provides STI testing.