What are the STI test options in Lawrence,MA?

Local health officials are worried about rising STD rates in the area, especially among young people. They say that the sex education program in schools is insufficient and youth do not know the risks of unprotected sex or how to protect themselves properly. Condom use has decreased, and young people don’t know they can be infected through oral sex.

Budget cuts in the public health sector have also resulted in defunded programs and closed-down clinics. Online dating apps also bear some of the blame, as they make it easy for people to meet others for sex, and most people don’t ask about sexual health status.

In 2016, Essex County had an HIV prevalence rate of 279.3 per 100K people, under the Massachusetts rate of 342.5. Health officials have expressed more concern about bacterial STDs.

The same year, Essex County’s chlamydia rate was 339.8 per 100K people, a bit below the state average of 394.5. The gonorrhea and (primary and secondary) syphilis rates were 45.9 and 6.2.

Health Quarters, on Merrimack St, provides STI testing and treatment. You can also be tested at the Greater Lawrence Family Health on Water St. AFC Urgent Care tests for STIs, and you can visit them in nearby North Andover or Methuen. You may be able to find free STD testing in the community during STD Awareness Month or any awareness campaign.

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STD Statistics In Essex County, MA



STD Cases


STD Rate

per 100,000 people

STD Breakdown

Statistics reported is based on publicly available data sources such as CDC for Essex County, MA. Data is normalized to accurately report Essex County STD Breakdown.

Additional STD Test Statistics in Lawrence, MA

In 2015, the national rate for Chlamydia was 478.8 per 100,000 population. The rate for Chlamydia in Massachusetts was much lower. The incidence rate was 352.0 per 100,000 population. In Essex County, the rate was between 201 and 500 cases per 100,000 population. The highest rates in the state were found in urban areas such as Boston and Springfield.

Massachusetts reported a total of 3,688 cases of Gonorrhea in 2015. Between 2006 and 2015, the number of cases in the state increased by 52%. During that period, the incidence rate also double. In 2015, the rate for Gonorrhea was 81.3 per 100,000 population. Cities in Essex County typically had between 11 and 50 cases per 100,000 population.

792 Primary, Secondary, and Early Latent Syphilis cases were reported in the state of Massachusetts in 2015. In 2006, there were just 219 cases reported. The number of cases was nearly four times higher in 2015. The statewide incidence rate in 2015 was 11.5 per 100,000 population. Essex County had 6-10 cases of infectious Syphilis per 100,000 population.

From 2005 to 2014, the number of HIV cases in Massachusetts increased by 26%. In 2014, a total of 629 newly diagnosed HIV cases were reported. In that year, 231 deaths in Massachusetts were attributed to HIV. The statewide rate in 2015 was 629 per 100,000 population. Less than 10 cases per 100,000 population were reported in the Lawrence area.

Graph of gonorrhea rates in lawrence massachusetts from 2008

STD Testing and Sexual Health Education in Lawrence, MA

Although Massachusetts does not mandate sexual health and HIV education in public schools, most schools in the state include health education in their curriculum. Various standards and guidelines set by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education exist to guide local schools in administering sexual education programs.

Sexual education is key to reducing the spread of STDs in the Lawrence area. These programs help students understand sexuality and make informed decisions about their sexual health. Students learn to use condoms and get tested regularly for STDs to protect their health.

In 2013, the teen birth rate in Lawrence was the sixth highest in the state with a rate of 40.9 The highest rates were found in Holyoke and Chelsea. High rates of teen pregnancy and teens engaging in sexual activity increase the need for reliable and medically accurate information about sexual health.

Schools in Lawrence are operated by Lawrence Public Schools, the local school district. District schools include Lawrence High School, Arlington Middle SChool, Frost Middle School, Hennessy Elementary School and Leahy Elementary School. Health education is included in the curriculum at Lawrence schools. Students can consult nurses and guidance counselors with questions about sexual health and relationships.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Demographics in Lawrence, MA

Statistics often show that females are disproportionately affected by the spread of Chlamydia. Therefore, the CDC recommends that women, especially young women, get tested for Chlamydia and other STDs. In Massachusetts the rate for Chlamydia was 352 per 1000,000 population in 2015. Similar to nationwide trends, the female rate in Massachusetts was highest. The female rate was 442.9 per 100,000 population, and the male rate was 255.5 per 100,000 population.

There were 3,688 cases of Gonorrhea reported in Massachusetts in 2015 at a rate of 81.3 per 100,000 population. Teens and young adults had the highest rates among age groups. The rate for 20 to 24 year olds was 211.9 per 100,000 population, compared to 54.3 in all ages. The rate for individuals aged 25 to 29 years old was 178.2 per 100,000 population.

The rate for Primary, Secondary and Early Latent Syphilis was highest among males in Massachusetts. Across the country, infectious Syphilis rates are highest among men. The rate for Syphilis was highest among Hispanics and African Americans. The rate was four times higher in Hispanics and three times higher in African Americans, compared to the White rate.

The HIV rate in Massachusetts and throughout the country has been on the decline in recent years. The highest rates are found among men. In Massachusetts, white men are especially affected by the spread of HIV. African American females also had high rates.

STI Testing Resources in Lawrence, MA

The mission of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s Division of STD Prevention (DSTDP) is to “reduce the burden of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis in Massachusetts communities, reduce the risk of HIV transmission, and reduce health disparities.” In addition to health surveillance, the department offers Partner Services and the STD HIV Training Center, a project that offers education for health care providers in the  treatment of STDs.

Greater Lawrence Family Health Center provides high-quality health services to the great Lawrence area. Clinical services include STD testing for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis and HIV. The health center has operates an HIV Care Management program for patients. The facility is located at 98-100 Water Street in Lawrence.

There is no Planned Parenthood location in Essex County; however, the nearest facility is located about 30 minutes away in Derry, New Hampshire. Boston also has a Planned Parenthood health center. Located at 4 Birch Street, Derry Health Center offers testing for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, Herpes and HIV. Condoms and educational materials can also be accessed here.

ExpressCare At Pentucket Medical provides urgent care medical services to patients in the Lawrence area. STD testing and treatment services are available. Appointments can be made, and walk-ins are welcome.

Better Sexual Health in Lawrence, MA

Many teens in the Lawrence area engage in sexual activity, and the teen pregnancy rate is one of the highest in the state of Massachusetts. Since teens and young adults have the highest rates for STDs, it is critical that young people understand how to prevent STDs.

In addition to practicing safe sex, individuals in the Lawrence area should get tested regularly for STDs. In fact, all sexually active individuals should get tested regularly. Testing for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis and HIV is available in Lawrence.

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