Jack Bloom MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow Health MEC writes:
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) have increased dramatically in Gauteng in the last two years, with more than 500 000 patients treated last year in public hospitals and clinics.
According to a written reply by Gauteng Health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature, the STIs treated in 2015 and 2016 were as follows:
Ramokgopa says that the 20 – 29 age group is the most affected, and that more females are attending public health facilities than males. The reasons are attributed to social, behavioral and biological factors.
It is disturbing that STIs like syphilis, chlamydia and gonorrhea have increased so sharply. While they are curable, their presence increases the risk of HIV-infection.
More efforts are needed to highlight what can be done to prevent STIs, and to provide swift effective treatment to prevent an epidemic amongst young people in particular.