Play It Safe: These 14 Cities Have the Highest STD Rates in Texas
Always remember to protect yourself, because COVID-19 isn't the only spreadable disease you can catch.
According to a report from Innerbody, there are 14 cities in the state of Texas which rank in top 150 cities in the country for the highest STD rates.
More than 2.5 million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis were reported in 2019. That's almost a 30% increase in reported STDs between 2015 and 2019 according to the CDC.
Due to the focus on the COVID-19 pandemic, many resources were highly stretched. The CDC has worked to create new ways that STD services can "meet more people where they are—during the COVID-19 pandemic and in the future" such as the following:
- STD express clinics, which provide walk-in testing & treatment without a full clinical exam
- Partnerships with pharmacies & retail health clinics, which can provide new access points for STD services (e.g., on-site testing and treatment)
- Telehealth/telemedicine, which can close gaps in testing and treatment, ensure access to healthcare providers, support self-testing or patient-collected specimens, and is especially critical in rural areas
“Less than 20 years ago, gonorrhea rates in the U.S. were at historic lows, syphilis was close to elimination, and advances in chlamydia diagnostics made it easier to detect infections,” said Raul Romaguera, DMD, MPH, acting director for CDC’s Division of STD Prevention. “That progress has since unraveled, and our STD defenses are down. We must prioritize and focus our efforts to regain this lost ground and control the spread of STDs.”
In fact, the sharpest increase was in cases of syphilis among newborns (i.e., congenital syphilis), which nearly quadrupled between 2015 and 2019.
“STDs will not wait for the pandemic to end, so we must rise to the challenge now,” Romaguera said. “These new data should create a sense of urgency and mobilize the resources needed, so that future reports can tell a different story.”