The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released new information on sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and things aren't looking good, especially for many GOP states.
The states with the highest rates of gonorrhea and chlamydia in 2016 appear to be mostly southern conservative states with a large Christian influence. In order, starting with the highest, are Alaska, Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Oklahoma. One state that made a jump in the rankings was Maryland — from 24th place to 18th.
The states that ranked the lowest in STI's are, starting with the lowest, Vermont, New Hampshire, West Virginia, Maine, and Utah. Hawaii had the largest drop in cases, dropping from the 2oth spot to 28th.
The cost to the U.S. healthcare system is high — around $16 billion a year. Dr. Gail Bolan, head of STI Prevention at the CDC, says improvements are needed in surveillance systems and that everyone infected should have access to treatment options.
It is my hope that a decade from now, we will be reporting on progress, instead of more health inequity in our society.