In the midst of the coronavirus, Alaska’s health authorities are dealing with another outbreak ̵
According to local media reports, the state’s Department of Health and Social Services has determined that sexually transmitted diseases are at an all-time high nationwide and in Alaska. Alaska’s epidemiology bulletin on syphilis, released Thursday, said the number of cases of sexually transmitted diseases has doubled in 2019, and health officials fear that the number will reach a similar level in 2020.
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According to the bulletin, most cases concerned heterosexual men and women. The increase in cases among women increases the risk of women spreading the infection to their babies, officials said, adding in the report that this was “the importance of STD screening on the first prenatal visit, during the third trimester, and at the time of “underlines delivery for people at risk. “
“This is a reminder that there are other outbreaks in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic that require our attention,” said Dr. Alaska’s state epidemiologist Joe McLaughlin said to local TV station KTUU-2.
A syphilis outbreak in Alaska was first reported in 2018. At this point, 114 cases of state epidemiologists were reported. By 2019, the number of syphilis cases rose to 242, an increase of 112 percent.
In some cases, many factors contributed to the increase. Among them were methamphetamine and heroin use, homelessness, and a detention history within 12 months of the survey, according to the state’s Epidemiology Bulletin.
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended states with STD clinics to open under capacity constraints to give priority to patients with STD symptoms and high-risk groups, the local outlet reported.
To reduce the spread of the disease, the department advised Alaskans to take precautions, get regular tests, get treatment, and let their partner know if they are positive, KTUU-2 said.