The fourth-largest city in Massachusetts recently experienced an HIV outbreak increase of 33% in 2015. Placing the rate of HIV infections at 10.5 per 100,000 people in Lowell, Massachusetts for 2016. State health officials were concerned when they noticed the decline in HIV testing for the Lowell area.
The state intends to combat this scare by encouraging health-care providers and emergency room technicians to test for HIV much more frequently.
Chlamydia continues to be the most common STI affecting the people (especially women) of Lowell. Rates for 2016 were 298.3 per 100,000 residents. As chlamydia is often asymptomatic, it’s crucial to get tested regularly to avoid long-term damage to your reproductive health. For 2016, gonorrhea rates came in at 55.3 per 100,000 people. According to the CDC, gonorrhea is most common in younger people (15-24 years old). The rate of syphilis, primary and secondary, for Middlesex County in 2016 was 6.2 per 100,000 people. The symptoms of syphilis can be mild and go unnoticed, so again, regularly testing is recommended.
For affordable STI testing and HIV screening in your location, you can visit Lowell Community Health Center on Jackson street. They offer confidential testing to teens without requiring parental consent. They also provide some great resources and youth programs for teens to learn about sexual health. Keep your eyes peeled on community calendars in Middlesex County if you’re interested in free STD testing opportunities. April is STD awareness month, so sometimes local events may include free HIV testing during that time.
To find the best services and location for you, use our search tools below to compare location features across Lowell clinics with our easy-to-read chart.