HOUSTON – Are you at risk for an STD? We are in the middle of Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) Awareness Week (April 9 – 15, 2023).
According to a 2018 report, Harris County ranks highest in the state in case count for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and total Syphilis.
The Harris County Public Health (HCPH) department wants to highlight this public health concern, especially among young people. The county also aims to reduce the STI-related stigma, fear, and discrimination so everyone has the tools and knowledge for prevention, testing, and treatment.
While STIs – also known as a sexually transmitted disease or STD – affect individuals of all ages, they take a heavy toll on young people. People of color are primarily the most vulnerable groups to newly diagnosed HIV cases.
Research shows too many people don’t believe they are at risk for, even if they’re engaging in risky behavior. The good news is that STIs are preventable.
To avoid giving or getting an STI/STD, HCPH advised to:
- Practice abstinence – know your status and get tested if you are sexually active
- Use condoms correctly
- Have fewer partners
- Get vaccinated – The HPV vaccine is safe, effective, and can help you avoid health problems like genital warts and some cancers.
- Get Tested!
Many STIs don’t have symptoms, but they can still cause health problems. To be sure, get tested. If you test positive, don’t be discouraged! Many STIs are curable and all are treatable. HCPH you or your partner are infected with an STI that can be cured, both of you need to start treatment immediately to avoid getting re-infected.
HCPH provides a variety of low-cost, clinical, and preventive health services. You can contact :
- Humble Clinic – 832-927-7350
- Southeast Clinic – 832-927-7350
- Antoine Prevention Clinic – 832-927-7350
Additionally, HCPH includes Testing 123 in its HIV/STD Prevention Program, a mobile outreach service that allows a person to get tested at their preferred location. Text 281-962-8378 to set up an HIV testing appointment.
For additional information visit HCPHTX.org or CDC.gov.
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