With recent statistics released by the CDC and Spokane County Health Department, it has become impossible for city officials to ignore the climbing STD rates. Over the last two decades the number of sexually transmitted diseases reported each year has been rising at an alarming pace, and as of 2014 some STDs had surpassed state averages.
Chlamydia rates in women and men rose significantly from 1995 to 2014, and the same is also true for Gonorrhea incidents which more than doubled in the ten year period. Even the incident rate for genital Herpes was well above state averages in 2014.
The statistics also show that it is not just teens that are testing positive more often for a sexually transmitted infection, but men and women ages 20 to 24 are being diagnosed more often with a STD. Men over the age of 25 are at a higher risk for contracting primary and secondary Syphilis, and they also have a greater chance of testing positive for HIV/AIDS. These statistics have some health officials particularly worried since 10 years ago the number of reported incidents for HIV and infectious Syphilis were decreasing.
As the STD rates continue to rise and the city and surrounding county, it only becomes more important that everyone gets tested for all of the sexually transmitted diseases on a regular basis. Some of the other statistics that residents should be aware of include,
- 18 to 34 year old men and women are almost three times as likely to contract a STD as those in other age brackets.
- According to 2015 statistics women are more likely to contract a STD than men.
- In 2013 the Chlamydia rate for the county was reported at 85.2 percent per 100,000 residents.
In response to the rising number of teen pregnancies and STD rates the state of Washington has recently passed a bill that requires all public school systems to offer medically accurate information in their sex education programs. The update curriculum will cover more topics that pertain to students lives, and this can include information on transgender identity in high school. It is important to note that this is only included at the high school level and not in the primary grade levels as some reports would have you mistakenly believe.
Abstinence is still being taught as the best method of preventing unplanned pregnancies, and it is also touted as the responsible choice for teens. While abstaining from sexual activity is generally advisable, especially since most teens are not mature enough to handle the responsibilities that come with it, statistics show that students are having intercourse and they need to know how to protect themselves from STDs.
This is why the newly revised curriculums include information on the importance of always using protection during sexual activity, along with getting tested for all STDs on a regular basis.
If everyone participated in regular HIV testing in Spokane Valley the rate for infection would decrease rapidly. The same is true for regular Herpes testing in Spokane Valley, especially in regards to area high schools where the easily contracted virus is most prevelant.
There are several demographical reasons why the STD rates for this metro city are so high, and health officials are hopeful that the recent changes to the information being taught in the public schools sex education programs will start to bring these percentages down.
Studies have shown that in areas where there are comprehensive sex education programs the STI rates are significantly lower. The same is also true regarding teen pregnancy rates.
It will take time for the new education programs to take effect, and this means that it is important for everyone to get tested for all of the sexually transmitted diseases on a regular basis. Unfortunately some residents are finding it difficult to locate a community STI testing center, and when they do the long lines often have them deciding to put off the important procedure.
Recent budget cuts to the state and county’s health care system has forced some testing centers to close their doors, and others are only open for a limited amount of time each day. The budget cuts also means that Medicare is no longer paying for STI testing, and many residents are finding that they simply cannot afford to take care of their sexual health.
When this is combined with the other factors, it is easy to see how the county has one of the highest STD rates in the state.
Known for its beautiful and wild scenery, this small city is also becoming famous for having one of the highest STD rates in the state. This makes it important for everyone in the community to take a few minutes and think about their sexual health. There are STI clinics in the city for residents to take advantage of, but it is not uncommon for them to look for a faster and more convenient option. Now you can schedule confidential STD testing with one simple phone call. It only takes a few minutes at a local lab, which means you still have plenty of time to explore the valley’s numerous trails and parks.