Yorkshire STI rates rise as health budget drops

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Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in Yorkshire and Humberside have increased, with gonorrhea levels up by 17.2 per cent.

Figures released by sexual health charity Terence Higgins Trust show STI diagnoses rose by 1.6 per cent last year to 40,900. Young people accounted for 63 per cent of cases.

Rates of chlamydia in the region are at their highest level in five years. Around 22,300 diagnoses were made, largely in 15 to 24 year olds. New gonorrhea cases shot up to 2,434, with a 41 per cent increase of the infection in men who have sex with men. Government figures this week showed Yorkshire and the Humber had the highest level of chlamydia in 15-19 year-old women in England.

Dr Michael Brady, medical director at the trust, said local authorities must “urgently confront” the spread of STIs.

He said: “The recently announced £200 million cut to local authorities’ public health budgets will inevitably lead to a worsening of our sexual health.

“It is essential that local authorities ensure continued and improved access to effective STI testing, treatment and prevention services.”

He suggested using “targeted social media” to raise awareness in young people, who might avoid using traditional services.

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