STD infection rates in the United States have reached record highs according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Monroe County is no exception. And while sexually transmitted infections of all kinds are on the rise, chlamydia is by far the most common STD in America. In a recent study, the CDC found that chlamydia accounted for 1.6 million of the more than two million new STD cases that were reported in 2016.
Now, however, public health officials hope that a new chlamydia test will reduce the time between diagnosis and treatment, thereby slowing the spread of the disease.
Whereas standard chlamydia testing can take several days to complete, this new test reportedly delivers accurate results within 30 minutes. This would allow physicians to test for chlamydia and prescribe treatment in a single appointment.
Last year, a group of researchers conducted a study to assess the accuracy of the test and gauge interest from nearly 300 women who were undergoing screening for the disease. Not only did the researchers find that the rapid point-of-care test was nearly as accurate as the standard test, they also found that 61 percent of women said they would wait up to 20 minutes for test results if it meant they could receive treatment before leaving a clinic. Another 26 percent said they would wait up to 40 minutes to get their test results.
This test could also be self-administered by people at home, thereby countering the stigma associated with going to an STD clinic for testing.
“A patient should be able to choose if he or she comes into a clinic, goes to a pharmacy or takes a test at home for STD diagnosis,” says lead study author Charlotte Gaydos of Johns Hopkins University. “The bottom line is to encourage people to get tested.”
To learn more about common STD risk factors and testing options, feel free to give us a call or contact us online today.