From January through April 2022, there were 96 reported cases of gonorrhea in Chautauqua County. This figure is 2.4 times greater than the 40 infections reported in 2019, and numbers grew progressively higher with each year.
Health and Human Services Director Christine Schuyler said, “Because of COVID restrictions in 2020 and 2021, STI screening numbers were lower than normal. Despite limited access to screening and testing resources, gonorrhea numbers climbed in 2020 and 2021. Experts suspect that there were and are many more cases in the community that have gone undetected. Our department recommends that sexually active community members seek out testing and treatment for STIs.”
During the first four months of this year, gonorrhea was most common among people ages 20-39 (68% of all reported infections), and cases reported were 58% female and 68% male. During the same time frame, chlamydia infections reported were most common among 15-29 year olds (74% of total infections), and were 68% female and 32% male.
Gonorrhea is a common STI that can infect both males and females. It is a very common bacterial infection that is treatable with medication. If left untreated, gonorrhea can cause very serious and permanent health problems. If you are pregnant and have gonorrhea, you can pass the infection to your baby during delivery. Talk to your doctor, get tested, and treat gonorrhea as soon as possible.
Other sexually transmitted infections include, but are not limited to, Chlamydia, Herpes, HIV/AIDS, Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Infection, and Syphilis. STIs, which are preventable, pass from one person to another through vaginal, oral, and anal sex.
People who are sexually active are encouraged to contact their primary healthcare provider for testing and treatment. If you do not have a primary healthcare provider, you can get tested at The Chautauqua Center (TCC), which has locations in Jamestown and Dunkirk, or Evergreen Health in Jamestown.
The Chautauqua Center (TCC)
· 107 Institute Street, Jamestown; 716-484-4334
· 75 East 3rd Street, Dunkirk; 716-363-6050
Evergreen Health Services (age 18 and over)
· 320 Prather Avenue, Jamestown; 716-664-7855