Ocoee, FL, in the Orlando-Kissimmee area, is experiencing an STD emergency. The city in Orange County is seeing rising infection rates with no end in sight.
From 2015 to 2018, chlamydia diagnoses went from 8,019 to 9,925 or rate increase of 3 points. Gonorrhea infections jumped from 2,203 in 2015 to 2,948.
The new numbers for early syphilis cases went from 407 in 2015 to 615 in 2018 and infectious syphilis diagnoses also increased from 239 in 2015 to 278 in 2018. Overall, the county saw bacterial STIs go from just under 11,000 in 2015 to more than 13,000 new cases in 2018.
The Orlando area’s STD outbreak is a huge problem for the tourist destination. In 2016, the city made the top ten list for most new HIV diagnoses in the country.
There are more than a dozen locations in and nearby that offer STI screenings, treatment, and follow-up care. The Community Health Centers Incorporated operates several sites including the Pine Hills Family Center on Mercy Dr in Orlando and the Apopka Family Center on the corner of E 7th St and S Forest Ave. Both facilities are on local bus routes.
Premier MED Family and Sports Medicine provide services at their S Hiawassee Rd office next door to the Florida Hospital Memorial Plaza. Another option is the Center for Multicultural Wellness and Prevention Incorporated on N Rio Grande Ave between W Colonial Dr and Arlington St.
There may be free STI testing sites in the area. These locations are often walk-in clinics with long waits for screenings, and they might not offer comprehensive testing.