Located in Grand Traverse County, Traverse City, MI, experienced a spike in HIV/STD infections for the past few years. HIV cases escalated from 54 in 2015 to 78 in 2020.
Traverse City is among the populated areas in Grand Traverse County; therefore, it was not surprising that STD infections were frequent among the residents.
According to surveillance reports, Chlamydia cases were inconsistent; for instance, in 2015, the incidences rose from 278 at a rate of 303.67 to 292 at a rate of 318.11 in 2017, before declining to 271 at a rate of 291.12 in 2019.
Public health officials have been successful in containing Syphilis infections throughout the county. However, the cases still rose from two at a rate of 2.18 in 2017 to by the end of 2019.
Gonorrhea incidents also soared from 10 at a rate of 10.92 in 2015 to 39 cases at a rate of 41.90 in 2019. The infections were more frequent among young adults and adolescents.
To eradicate STD/HIV infections, the Grand Traverse County Health Department strives to build awareness in the general public, focusing on groups that work with youth. It also leverages national and state media campaigns on the STD epidemic to reach a larger population.
Several healthcare facilities in Traverse City, MI, such as Planned Parenthood – Karen Christensen Walker Health Center, and Urgent Care – Foster Family Community Health Center, provide HIV/STD services. Munson Medical Center and Cadillac Hospital also offer sexual health services.
City Dwellers may be fortunate to receive free STD testing in some clinics during outreach events. Word of caution, though. The free tests may only be available to individuals at risk of contracting STDs, for instance, MSMs, IDUs, and commercial sex workers, and the test may be invasive and uncomfortable.