Escambia County ranks 17th in reported AIDS cases in Florida and is in the top 10 for two other STDs, causing local health officials to target high-risk groups. The state Department of Health reports that women, who primarily get infected through heterosexual intercourse, are one of the fastest-growing populations for HIV/AIDS in the region. Escambia also outpaces national averages for gonorrhea and chlamydia infections. Linda Averill, STD program manager for the Escambia County Health Department, warned: "If you're having sex, you're at risk."
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