PRO/EDR> Syphilis, gonococcal disease – Australia: (VI) rebound post COVID, 2022


A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases

Date: Wed 14 Jun 2023 12:58 BST
Source: Daily Mail [abridged, edited]

Rising cases of sexually transmitted diseases are causing concern
among doctors in Geelong [Victoria], with fears the surge will lead to
adverse pregnancy outcomes. Cases of syphilis and gonorrhoea are
returning to pre-pandemic levels in the Victorian region, particularly
in women of child-bearing age.

88 cases of syphilis were recorded in the area in 2022 (19 cases per
100 000 population), according to data from the Kirby Institute. This
was a sharp increase compared with the 12.7/100 000 recorded in 2019.

There were also 224 cases of gonorrhoea recorded in 2022 (48.3/100
000), which is quickly closing the gap with the 2019 rate of 55.7/100

Starting this week, STI [sexually transmitted infections] tests will
be provided by Anglesea Medical centre who are in partnership with the
Victorian Sexual Health Network (VSHN) to help people manage their
symptoms. The partnership aims to increase the availability of sexual
health services across Geelong and will be led by the Melbourne Sexual
Health Centre.

Asymptomatic testing and contact tracing will be important components
of the campaign, according to Anglesea medical practitioner Lucy
Dobson. Helping patients detect potential infections that they might
not be aware of will help to recover from the increasing rates of STIs
in the shires surrounding Geelong. A website to help people monitor
their symptoms and the urgency that they should seek treatment has
been launched by VSHN [].

[byline: Zak Wheeler]

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