Congenital Syphilis: LA County Repeatedly Fails to Act, Says AHF | Business

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LOS ANGELES – (BUSINESS WIRE) – Sep 20, 2021–

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) today sharply criticized Los Angeles County officials for its repeated failure to adequately address the congenital syphilis tragedy in the county over the past decade, despite mounting evidence – and repeated warnings from AHF and others – about the crisis.

The AHF reprimand follows news of another dramatic spike in congenital syphilis cases in the county, as a Los Angeles Times front page article reported today. Times History Notes “Nine years ago, only six cases were reported in LA County, according to a report from the Department of Public Health. Last year that number reached 113. ” Previously, congenital syphilis cases in LA County had skyrocketed from 6 in 2012 (a twelve-year low) to 44 cases in 2017, a seven-fold increase (Patch N. Hollywood / Toluca Lake, Calif., 15 May 2018).

For more than a decade, AHF has aggressively promoted syphilis awareness, prevention and treatment through independent awareness campaigns and billboards and press releases in Los Angeles. The AHF’s actions included sounding the alarm bells about congenital syphilis as early as 2017, 2018 and 2019 with county health officials and the public, including a striking poster campaign in the Los Angeles area. titled “Syphilis can be fatal to your baby”. (In Los Angeles from November 2019 to March 2020).

“We are once again witnessing another unforgivable rise in congenital syphilis cases in Los Angeles – a preventable and heartbreaking tragedy that Los Angeles County has done essentially nothing about in years and years,” said the president of the AHF. Michael weinstein. “These numbers and the actual lives – and sometimes the deaths – of the babies and mothers they represent demand an immediate and significantly strengthened response from county health officials. One way or another, LA County now needs to dramatically increase the availability of syphilis prevention, testing and treatment education. “

And as shocking as those numbers are, they’re likely low, after LA County officials redeployed most public health staff toward its full response to COVID-19 in 2020 and throughout 2021.

As part of its advocacy around syphilis, the AHF also conducted a poster campaign “Syphilis is serious” (February 2018). All of the notice boards led the public to the AHF’s website www.FreeSTDCheck.org to learn more about the disease and find places to access free STD testing and affordable care. treatment of syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia via AHF.

The “Syphilis Can Kill Your Baby” and “Syphilis Is Serious” billboards followed on from the AHF’s groundbreaking “Syphilis Explosion” outdoor advertising campaign that began in 2014. This campaign was followed by the AHF’s “Syphilis Tsunami” campaign which took place in Los Angeles in 2016 and was complemented by a digital media campaign to draw attention to the national syphilis epidemic, including the shortage a key drug to treat it. The AHF lobbied pharmaceutical company Pfizer to supply Bicillin LA, a key syphilis drug – and the only recommended treatment for patients with congenital syphilis – in quantities that meet the growing demand for treatment.

To find free STD / HIV testing locations, visit www.freeestdcheck.org

AIDS Health Foundation (AHF), the world’s largest AIDS organization, currently provides healthcare and / or medical services to more than 1.6 million people in 45 countries around the world in the United States, Africa, Latin America / Caribbean, Asia / Pacific region and Eastern Europe. To learn more about AHF, please visit our website: www.aidshealth.org, find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/aidshealth and follow us: @aidshealthcare

See the source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210920005944/en/

CONTACT: MEDIA CONTACT:

Ged Kenslea, Senior Director, Communications, AHF

+1.323.791.5526 [email protected]

KEYWORD: CALIFORNIA UNITED STATES NORTH AMERICA

INDUSTRY KEYWORD: PUBLIC POLICY / PHARMACEUTICAL GOVERNMENT STATE / LOCAL AIDS HEALTH INFECTIOUS DISEASES FONDATION DE PHILANTHROPIE

SOURCE: AIDS Healthcare Foundation

Copyright Business Wire 2021.

PUB: 20/09/2021 17:52 / DISC: 20/09/2021 17:52

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210920005944/en

Copyright Business Wire 2021.

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