STDs Reach All-Time High in California

The latest stats on sexually transmitted diseases in California are appalling. Chlamydia (CT), gonorrhea (GC), and syphilis cases are surging across the Golden State, with California rising to the top of the list in 2016. More than a quarter-million Californians contracted either syphilis, chlamydia or gonorrhea last year, a 40% increase compared with five years ago.

Of the three, CT remains the most common, according public health officials. California CT cases are at their highest levels since mandated reporting began in 1990. Fourteen counties had CT rates above the state’s: San Francisco (939.4), Kern (714.1), Fresno (656.3), Los Angeles (578.5), Kings (576.9), San Diego (573.3), Butte (573.0), Sacramento (566.5), Tulare (562.3), Humboldt (551.9), Solano (547.6), San Bernardino (536.9), Santa Barbara (514.8), and San Joaquin (514.4).

There were 64,677 GC cases last year, a 19% increase over 2015 and double the number from five years ago. Nine counties surpassed the state CG rate: San Francisco (606.1), Lake (311.7), Los Angeles (218.6), Kern (202.9), Fresno (202.2), Sacramento (190.4), Humboldt (187.4), Alameda (186.7), and Mendocino (185.4).

The most distressing aspect of the report concerned the number of congenital syphilis cases, which affect newborn babies. Those were up 28 percent from 2015 to a total of 632 cases which resulted in deaths or complications for newborns.

STD cases are also up nationwide, but California’s performance is particularly worrisome. Health professionals recommend that all sexually active adults get regularly tested for STDs.

Read the Executive Summary from California’s Department of Public Health here


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