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HIV/AIDS and STDs: Alabama's Epidemic
Broadcast Date: February 1, 2006
Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are hidden epidemics of tremendous health and economic consequence in the United States. They are hidden from public view because many Americans are reluctant to address sexual health issues in an open way and because of the biological and social factors associated with these diseases. Approximately 12 million new cases of STDs, 3 million of them among teenagers, occur annually. STDs represent a growing threat to the nation's health and national action is urgently needed.
The term "STD" denotes the more than 25 infectious organisms that are transmitted through sexual activity, along with the dozens of clinical syndromes that they cause. The spectrum of health consequences range from mild acute illness to serious long-term complications such as cervical, liver, and other cancers and reproductive health problems. Women and infants bear a disproportionate burden of STD-associated complications. A variety of women's health problems, including infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and chronic pelvic pain, result from unrecognized or untreated STDs.
Among these STDs, the number of HIV/AIDS cases in Alabama rose dramatically in the 1980s, and has since peaked in the mid-1990s, with approximately 1,100 cases reported annually between 1995 and 1997. While HIV/AIDS cases have been reported all over Alabama, infection rates in southern Alabama are about twice those in the northern part of the state.
Anthony Merriweather, MSPH
HIV/AIDS Surveillance Director
Manager of Prevention
Technical Assistance/Data Quality, HIV/AIDS Division
Agnes Oberkor, MSN, MPH, CRNP
Nurse Training Officer
HIV/AIDS providers, nurses, clinicians and social workers.
None for this program
Contact for Technical Assistance
(334) 206-5618 or email ALPHTN
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