Mississippi is also suffering from its own high rate. The STD making its way around the state? HIV.
The University of Mississippi Medical Center said there have been 311 new cases of the disease so far in 2018.
The Express Health Clinic at the Jackson Medical Mall has been fighting the disease. Director Dr. Leandro Mena said there is no lie in the numbers when treating STDs. She said if people came in for care for their disease, it would be helpful. They could potentially lower the new infection rate by 90 percent. However, she said those who don’t know they’re infected and spread the disease.
Mena said some drugs control the virus that allows people to live longer and live a productive life. One such drug is PREP. She said it’s the newest, most powerful technique for preventing the spread of the HIV infection to those who are negative for the virus. Those who use it can reduce their chance of getting it by over 99 percent.
Mena knows that education and access are the keys to preventing STDs and HIV from spreading, and it begins with the youth and young adults. She recommends anybody 13 and older and sexually active to be tested for STDs like HIV. Whatever a person’s age, if someone has multiple partners, it’s a good idea to get tested regularly.
Written by Mark Riegel, MD
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Corey Walsh was able to attain a prescription called Truvada to prevent HIV infection with the help of his parents’ health insurance policy. However, the Food and Drug Administration approved drug cost him $400 more each month than he could pay for. He eventually joined a clinical trial that took over the costs.
The CDC reports of STDs have increased for four straight years, hitting a new record high. However, Northwestern has yet to change how it approaches sexually transmitted diseases for its students’ health.