Dave Wilson, acting agency director, said the number of gonorrhea and syphilis cases have risen. Some counties are seen nearly triple digits case numbers. Wilson said since HIV is no longer considered a death sentence, people are not as careful as they once were. He said this is leading to an increase in other STD infections.
The agency would like another $1 million added to the state budget to help it decrease the rate of STDs. He said the money would be used to hire 12 new employees in four regions of the state.
Wilson said the employees would work in teams. He said they would work to reduce the long DHEC clinics’ waiting times, boost their efforts to reach state citizens and work to improve relations between clinical and field staffers.
He said the model would help the agency to decrease the number of infection.
In 2016, the number of gonorrhea cases was 9,301, which is up from 8,285 the year before. The DHEC said there were 3,024 cases in the Midlands. In 2015, that number was 2,726. Richland County also saw an increase from 1,002 to 1,201 (2015 to 2016).
Greenville state rep. Garry Smith said he’s concerned that the extra help would not lead to a rise in people seeking treatment at the clinics.
Wilson said the new DHEC employees would make it easier for the agency to track people down who were diagnosed with an STD and they would reduce the long waiting times where people go for treatment.
Written by Mark Riegel, MD
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Evofem Bio has launched its Phase 2b/3 clinical trial Amprevence and is accepting enrollees to see how its non-hormonal, on-demand and surfactant-free drug Amphora helps in the prevention of female gonorrhea and urogenital chlamydia.
Ashley, 59, was hospitalized for appendicitis, but never suspected she had HIV, and neither did her doctors. She said the doctors told her she had a virus and that was it. To her, it was unreal that she had the one virus that people were deathly afraid of.