Over 200,000 cases of chlamydia, over 75,000 cases of gonorrhea, and over 10,000 cases of syphilis reported last year alone. Statistics show that nearly half of all sexually active adults will contract an STD within their lifetime.
In Santa Barbara County gonorrhea cases have doubled and syphilis cases have quadrupled just within the past seven years.
Chlamydia statistics are among the highest across California counties.
Many of these diseases can be present without any symptoms, so regular testing is the best chance for catching and treating these conditions. In response to these issues, and to try to help curb the rapid spread of disease, some doctors are following the federal recommendations of prescribing antibiotics for both the patient and their partner.
The county has a free STD testing program. You do have to be a resident and show proof of residency.
STD testing clinics are located throughout the Santa Barbara area, including Pacific Pride Foundation on East Haley Street and the Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics on North Milpas Street. On State Street the American Indian Health and Services Corporation provides testing services, and the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department can be found on Montecito Street.