STD Awareness: What You Need To Know
April 21, 2010April is STD Awareness Month, and our friends at RH Reality Check are in the midst of a compelling and informative series on the current state of sexually transmitted infections in the United States. In partnership with the National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), the series has already shed light on critical issues. Read the first four stories below, and check back for updates on the full series at RH Reality Check. "What I Didn’t Know About Sexual Health: Reflections From a New Perch" There are these amazing front line workers in the public health workforce known as Disease Intervention Specialists (DIS) that are just below the radar screen, but are the most fascinating folks whose jobs would make for the most watchable reality television show. "Youth and STDs: The Epidemic in our Midst" Sex education that is truly comprehensive doesn’t just talk about the benefits of abstinence and the importance of using condoms consistently and correctly each and every single time one engages in sexual activity. A truly comprehensive sex education curriculum also includes lessons on healthy relationships, communication, and other life skills. "Preventing STDs Among Native American And Alaskan Native Populations" The Indian Health Surveillance Report confirms that public health efforts should be directed toward eradicating health disparities, increasing the availability of screening and delivering evidence-based programs and interventions to communities with an emphasis on youth and women. "Lessons From a Failed Syphillis Elimination Strategy" Syphilis warrants the attention given to it by past elimination efforts. But prevention programs should be viewed in the boarder framework of contextual factors. Efforts to “eliminate” disease can only be rightfully--and sustainably--addressed in conjunction with strategies to eliminate social and economic disparities, address the racial, ethnic and sexual minority status conferred on specific groups of people at risk, and reduce poverty throughout our society.