April is STD Awareness Month
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
April 4, 2013
LAS VEGAS – Get tested . . . that’s the message from the Southern Nevada Health District as it encourages Valley residents to discuss their sexual health with their health care providers and their partners, especially during STD Awareness Month. The Sexual Health Clinic is open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at 400 Shadow Lane, Ste. 106. For information or testing, contact the Sexual Health Clinic at (702) 759-0702, email: STDClinic@snhdmail.org or visit the health district website, www.SNHD.info.
On Friday, April 19 and Friday, April 26, the Sexual Health Clinic will offer “Free Friday’s” in observance of STD Awareness Month. Clients can receive a free fast track test for HIV, syphilis, gonorrhea or Chlamydia; however, following an assessment by a nurse if they are symptomatic, the fee of $30 will be assessed for treatment, etc. “Free Friday” does not include a rapid HIV test.
In 2012, Clark County reported 8,584 cases of Chlamydia and more than 1,900 cases of gonorrhea. In Nevada as across the nation, higher rates of STDs persist among African-Americans and Hispanics as compared to whites.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that there are about 20 million new cases of STDs in the United States each year and nearly half of these occur in people between the ages of 15 and 24. That’s 20 million reasons to get tested. Because symptoms do not develop, people are not aware they are infected and unknowingly infect their partners.
The highest rates of infection occur in young women, African Americans, men who have sex with men, and individuals who have limited or no access to health care. The CDC recommends routine Chlamydia testing for women under age 26, and for women who are pregnant or have new or multiple partners. In addition, the CDC also recommends routine HIV testing for people between the ages of 13-64. The economic impact of STDs is estimated to be about $16 billion annually in direct medical costs.
Untreated STDs can have long-term consequences. Left untreated gonorrhea and Chlamydia can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease in women, which can cause infertility. Each year, STDs cause at least 24,000 women in the United States to become infertile. If untreated, syphilis can lead to brain, cardiovascular and organ damage. In pregnant women, syphilis can result in congenital syphilis (syphilis in babies), stillbirths, infant death soon after birth (40 percent of cases) or physical deformities and neurological complications in children who survive. STDs increase the risk of HIV transmission for men and women. The CDC also recommends that men who have sex with men should also be tested for Chlamydia as well as gonorrhea and syphilis.
STDs can be easily treated and cured. As part of National STD Awareness Month, the Southern Nevada Health District encourages everyone to get tested and get the facts about sexually transmitted diseases. The health district’s STD clinic provides testing, treatment, exams, referrals, and counseling and the cost is $30; HIV testing is also available. All visits are confidential.
In addition to testing at the Sexual Health Clinic, HIV/ STD screenings are available at the following locations:
Saturday, April 6, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
4905 Tropicana Ave. at Decatur
Saturday, April 20, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
4470 E. Bonanza Rd. at Lamb
Monday & Thursday, 10:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Gay & Lesbian Center of Southern Nevada, (702) 733-9800
401 S. Maryland Parkway
Free HIV/STD screening
Tuesday & Wednesday, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Richard Steele Boxing Facility, (702) 638-1311/(702) 759-0707
2475 West Cheyenne Ave., #120
Free HIV/STD screening
Tuesday & Wednesday, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.,
Thursday, 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Community Counseling Center, (702) 369-8700
714 E. Sahara Ave.
Free HIV/hepatitis B&C screening
The Southern Nevada Health District serves as the local public health authority for Clark County, Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite and North Las Vegas. The agency safeguards the public health of the community’s residents and visitors through innovative programs, regulations, and initiatives focused on protecting and promoting their health and well-being. More information about the Health District, its programs, services, and the regulatory oversight it provides is available at www.SNHD.info.