Nebraska: New Funds Should Boost Fight Against STDs
September 1, 2005
Local health officials are calling for Douglas County residents in their teens and 20s to seek testing and, if necessary, treatment for STDs. People ages 15-29 account for 75 percent of the county's chlamydia and gonorrhea cases, said Douglas County Health Department Director Dr. Adi Pour.
In the budget it passed in July, the Douglas County Board included $40,000 for STD testing and treatment, said Chris Rodgers, board member. He added that since then, the city of Omaha has pledged $10,000 for the effort, and the United Way of the Midlands has offered $25,000.
Representatives of the three groups announced the new initiative on Aug. 29 outside the Charles Drew Health Center. Dr. Richard Brown, the center's CEO, said that 1,000 young people came to the facility for testing in the past year, and 40 percent of these patients were infected with an STD. "It is real. It is here. The only weapon we have is education, information and intelligence," Brown said. Part of the new funding will support a partner-notification effort, he said.
Pour said that in 2003, the county's infection rates were 522 per 100,000 people for chlamydia and 245 per 100,000 people for gonorrhea. These are considerably higher than the national rates of 304 per 100,000 people for chlamydia and 116 per 100,000 for gonorrhea. County officials have set a goal of reducing each disease by 15 percent by 2010.
For information, visit www.stdomaha.com or telephone 402-444-7750.
08.29; Kristin Zagurski
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.