EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The Department of Public Health is urging residents, especially pregnant women to seek sexually transmitted diseases health screenings to safeguard their and their newborns’ health.

According to the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention report that annual cases of STDs in the United States continued to climb, reaching an all time high for the seventh consecutive year.

The newly released 2020 STD Surveillance Report found:

  • 5,759 reported cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis – the three most commonly reported STDs in 2020.
  • A nearly 25% increase in these reportable STDs between 2019 and 2020.
  • The sharpest increase was in cases of syphilis among newborns (i.e., congenital syphilis), which nearly quadrupled between 2015 and 2019.

DPH is urging pregnant women to seek timely prenatal care and receive any necessary health screenings to detect and treat STDs and prevent transmitting the disease and any harmful effects to their newborn baby.

STDs can have serious health consequences. People with these infections do not always experience disease symptoms, but, if left untreated, some can increase the risk of HIV infection, or other complications such as chronic pelvic pain, pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, newborn complications and even infant death.

Individuals in need of STD screenings may contact the DPH CommUnity Care Center for an appointment at (915) 212-0200 and select Option 5 or visit EPHealth.com under the Services Tab CommUnity Care Center or call 2-1-1 for a referral to services.

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