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Thursday, June 20, 2019
HomeThe 907Alaska Life Hack: Where to pick up STDs in Alaska

Alaska Life Hack: Where to pick up STDs in Alaska

It’s the weekend and you’re out and about and under the age of 35. There’s something you need to know:

Alaska’s 2018 infectious disease report is out, and sexually transmitted diseases are trying to get in your pants.

Compared to 2017, chlamydia is up 4 percent statewide, gonorrhea is up 3 percent, and syphilis, while the raw numbers are small, is up 289 percent. Year after year, these numbers keep creeping higher.

In Anchorage, syphilis cases went from 21 in 2017 to 85 in 2018. The statewide total jumped from 25 to 113, so most diagnosed syphilis cases are in Anchorage.

Also in Anchorage,  there were 1,283 cases of gonorrhea reported in 2017. By 2018, the case count rose to 1,375.

Unsurprisingly, the state’s largest city also has the highest raw numbers of chlamydia, jumping from 2,522 to 2,677 between 2017 and 2018.

Chlamydia also puts Alaska on the map, as the No. 1 state.  In 2017, more than 1.7 million cases of chlamydia were reported to the CDC. But Alaska is No. 1 for this disease, which is most often asymptomatic. 85 percent of those diagnosed with it had no symptoms.

As in Alaska, gonorrhea rates are rising across the country, and the medical community is running out of treatment options to cure what is becoming increasingly drug-resistant infection. Since 2012, gonorrhea in Alaska is up 208 percent.

Alaska has the highest rate of the infectious sexually transmitted disease in the country. Half of STDs are among young people ages 15 to 24 years.

So be sure to have fun this weekend, and if you swipe right on that dating app, don’t bring home anything you don’t want to tell your doctor about.

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Written by

Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • We might be horrible at teaching our children while paying top dollar for that horrendous education, but at least we are #1 in something!

    • Yet I was the bad mom for keeping condoms and pregnancy tests in my home. I was young once. I was not going to play dumb regarding the raging hormones of a teen. I was helping your kids, not encouraging them.

  • I figured the bed bug plague would lower STD rates. Most people will roll the dice on a fatal venereal disease but nobody will take a chance on getting bed bugs in their home. You can’t take home just anybody anymore, no matter how drunk you are.

  • If you’re worried handle it by yourself

    • Master of your domain!

  • How come HIV isn’t mentioned?
    Leaving it out of consideration makes most people think its not something to worry about. The CDC or whoever, omitting a disease and only attributing it to certain populations or regions leaves these pseudo safe/ unaffected populations even in greater danger of contracting these diseases.
    Please wake up!

    • Thank you. I have a person I love that has had AIDS for maybe 10 years. When I stopped seeing commercials about it, I didn’t understand. His huge hospital costs could buy a lot of homeless housing. Anything preventable must be included in all sex ed. It should not even be a choice for parents as to their kids with a mountain of questions to not receive this part of education. It’s not easy for the teachers either, but we are idiots to think it’s not going on just because dad said no.

  • There’s going to be a lot more disease with the Border influx that we have going on right now from Central American countries and Africa

    • You have a problem much bigger than can be helped in a comment.

  • It’s a clever way to write about a serious subject in public health in layman language so I hope the tone isn’t too flippant for easy dismissal. CMV infections are one of the common silent causes for infertility. Years ago, 1974, 1975, as a high school hospital volunteer making beds, filling water pitchers, and fetching Anchorage Daily Times from newspaper kiosk downstairs, I recall the nurse I was working with told me in a hushed voice to wash my hands extra often as there were patients with syphilis, so I had to look it up in the encyclopedia.

  • Stop screwing strangers. Well, that’s not going to happen now is it? People are going to do the boogie. That’s what we do. Always have. Always will. So, latex up ok? “No love without the glove”!

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