Additional STD Test Statistics in San Ramon, CA
STDs that include chlamydia, gonorrhea, and early (infectious) syphilis have mostly been on the rise in the Bay Area over the past six years. This is according to state Department of Public Health statistics.
Especially concerning is the increasing rate of syphilis among women, and in particular pregnant women, who can pass the disease along to their babies. This we can attribute to increased reporting of cases by doctors and clinics to county health officers.
We can also attribute this to increasing drug use involving needle-sharing and to changes in social behavior. Mostly we can attribute it to a decline in condom use. Some feel that the decline in condom use we can attribute to less concern about HIV, given its dramatically improved treatments.
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are steadily increasing in Contra Costa county. The numbers are especially high with sexually active people under the age of 25.
The county health department is encouraging those who are sexually active with multiple partners get a medical exam every three to six months. If you are diagnosed with an STC, the county recommends you let every partner you have had sex with in the last 60 days know of your STI.
STD Testing and Sexual Health Education in San Ramon, CA
Comprehensive sex education is the law in California. This means that all public schools in California are required by law to teach comprehensive sex education and HIV prevention education at least once in middle school and once in high school.
Comprehensive sex education includes learning about anatomy and birth control. It also means students are taught about healthy relationships, decision-making, and more.
This sex education should give students information to make healthy decisions about relationships and sexual and reproductive health. The sex education curriculum in school should include information about:
- Sexual harassment, sexual assault, and sex trafficking
- Health relationships
- Adolescent relationship abuse, intimate partner violence and sexual coercion
- Sexual orientation and sexuality
- Gender identity, gender roles, and gender stereotypes
- Consent, communication, and healthy decision-making
- HIV prevention and other STD prevention including testing and treatment
- Pregnancy prevention, parenting, adoption, and abortion
It is the right of a student to get this information in schools. A group called Teen Source asks students if they are actually getting comprehensive sex education at school.
Teen Source provides students with a questionnaire online to fill out to say if they have not received sex education covering all of the above. Teen Source also gives students a chance to explain if they have received information that is not accurate.
We hear that students in college have limited info because they had limited or no sex education. It’s still a big issue in families where people do not talk about it or it is considered taboo.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Demographics in San Ramon, CA
A look at demographics can help our understanding of STI rates in your city and region. The demographic that is most likely to be infected and least likely to get tested is people 25 and younger. Some experts blame the rates of STDs in this demographic in part on the use of new hook up apps that lead to casual sex among people 25 and younger.
Concerning the jump in the state for STDs, officials are not sure of all the reasons. People are not using condoms regularly so this could lead to the higher STD rates. People are going without testing and treatment and unknowingly spreading STDs. This is another possible reason for the higher rates.
We also see reports that STD prevention systems have been weakened because local and state clinics have reduced capacity or closed in the last few years. This also contributes to higher STI rates.
HIV diagnoses were 85 percent for men having sex with men in 2013. Gay men saw the highest rates for STDs. Twice as many women suffer from chlamydia compared to men.
Men suffer in higher numbers than women from other STDs including syphilis and HIV. STD rates also are generally higher in areas with a high poverty rate.
Racial disparities persist. We have seen annual rates for gonorrhea of 351.1 per 100,000 with this being 6.2 times the non-Hispanic white rate of 57 per 100,000.
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is addressing these disparities in STDs. They have identified census tracts with high numbers of gonorrhea and racial disparities and puts an intervention focus in these area.
The group is also collaborating with the California Department of Education. They are trying to reduce the high rates of STDs among youth through supporting comprehensive sex education, improving access to sexual health services, and helping schools build supportive environments for all youth, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.
The CDPH trains medical providers to assure that they are assessing their patients’ risk for STDs, screening appropriately and using the most effective treatments. The CDPH also works with local health jurisdictions to coordinate disease prevention and control efforts statewide. They help identify infected individuals and assure that they and their partners get treated.
STI Testing Resources in San Ramon, CA
Several options are available to you for STI testing. For example, San Ramon Health Center/Planned Parenthood is a facility that can help you. It offers services including:
Conventional HIV Blood Test
Hepatitis B Test
Hepatitis C Test
Rapid HIV Blood Test
Individuals ages 19 – 26 who have no health insurance and meet financial criteria may qualify for the Merck Vaccine Patient Assistance Program to receive the HPV vaccine (Gardasil) at no charge. This is at the Planned Parenthood location.
This health center supports and welcomes clients regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or biological sex, including but not limited to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and intersex clients. All services are provided in a respectful and professional manner.
Planned Parenthood launched an app in California to encourage people to get STD testing. Through the app men and women can order chlamydia and gonorrhea tests.
If you are embarrassed to be seen at Planned Parenthood you could consider the hospital or urgent care option. No one will know why you are there. Yet another option is a private service such as PlushCare.
You order your STD tests. Then you visit a local lab.
Then you get results via email in three business days or less. When you order you choose the tests you want to order.
You can also use the STD Check private service. This service is advertised as being 100 percent confidential. All tests are FDA approved. Same day testing is also available. Five-minute testing is an option with results in one to two days.
STD Check does not accept insurance. This way your testing results are not reported to your insurance company. This service provides a free phone consultation with a doctor for every test where you have a positive result.
Plush Care is another option to consider. With this service you book an appointment. This can be anytime and seven days a week. You then talk with a doctor keeping in mind you will get testing at a facility near you. If needed after you talk to a doctor, you then pick up a prescription with prescription partners being drug stores includes Walmart, CVS, and Walgreens.
The county’s STD program offers screening, diagnosis, and treatment services for STDs including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes, and trichomoniasis
Better Sexual Health in San Ramon, CA
You can find in your area information about STDs, testing, and treatment in your area. While STD rates are high in your area, help is available in your area in the way of testing and treatment that is confidential, discreet, compassionate, and effective.
Consider how the staff at these facilities is trained to help someone like you. This is especially with the staff at Planned Parenthood or any other facility reminding you to check your health, improve it, and keep yourself healthy by always using a condom.
The San Ramon Medical Center is a facility that can help you get information about STDs, testing, and treatment. You can also get such information from a school such as San Ramon Valley High School by going to a nurse or counsellor. Here are links to resources mentioned above.