STDs Are On The Rise

In early April, California’s Department of Public Health released its 2016 County Health Status Profiles. The report found that the incidence rate of chlamydia increased by 7 percent in 2012-2014 over 2009-2011. Gonorrhea incidence among males aged 15-44 increased by 54 percent and by 35 percent for females in the same age group.

We charted the department’s historical data for reported cases and rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis infections in California dating back to 1913:

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reported cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis increased nationally in 2014 for the first time since 2006.

STDs continue to affect young people — particularly women — most severely, but increasing rates among men contributed to the overall increases in 2014 across all three diseases.

The chart below compares California incidence rates to national rates as reported by the CDC:

April is STD Awareness Month, aimed at preventing some of the nearly 20 million new cases of sexually transmitted diseases that occur in the U.S. each year. The CDC is using the month to encourage individuals and health care providers to talk, test and treat.