DHEC offers free STD testing Thursday | Local News
COLOMBIA, SC – To promote public health and recognize April 11-17 as National STD Awareness Week, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) clinics are participating in a free sexually transmitted disease screening day (MST) for Southern Carolinians.
Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., residents can visit their local DHEC health department free of charge to be tested for hepatitis C, HIV, chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis. Appointments are encouraged and can be scheduled by calling 1-855-472-3432.
“STDs are preventable and an important step in prevention is getting tested,” said Ali Mansaray, director of the STD, HIV and Viral Hepatitis Division at DHEC. “With the number of certain types of STDs increasing each year in South Carolina and across the country, we cannot do enough to educate each other on the importance of safe STDs, including prevention. and treatment, which constitutes National STD Awareness Week about. “
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the number of STD cases nationwide has increased since 2014, with more than two million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis reported in 2018 alone. This rising trend in the number of STDs is also leading to an increase in other challenges, including the number of babies born with syphilis and the risks of infertility.
In recent years, national rates of syphilis have increased in both men and women, in all regions and among all races / ethnicities. Here in South Carolina, cases of infectious, early and total syphilis have continued to increase year after year in all populations and most among women, pregnant women and newborns. The Division of STDs / HIV and Viral Hepatitis is committed to increasing awareness, testing and education of affected populations.