Sexually transmitted disease rates continue to rise | Department of Health

Department of Health recently released its 2016 STD data, and rising rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis have prompted health officials to encourage sexually active individuals to get tested and treated.

  • Tuesday, October 10, 2017 11:00am
  • News

Department of Health recently released its 2016 STD data, and rising rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis have prompted health officials to encourage sexually active individuals to get tested and treated.

The number of cases for chlamydia, gonorrhea and primary, secondary and congenital syphilis rose in 2016 over 2015 numbers.


No. of cases in 2016: 31,193

No. of cases in 2015: 28,748

Rate: 434.2 per 100,000


No. of cases in 2016: 8,165

No. of cases in 2015: 7,203

Rate: 113.7 every 100,000

Primary and secondary syphilis

No. of cases in 2016: 566

No. of cases in 2015: 453

Rate: 7.9 per 100,000

Congenital syphilis:

No. of cases in 2016: 5

No. of cases in 2015: 3

Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men are disproportionately impacted by STDs.

Chlamydia is the most commonly reported STD; the rates are highest in 20 to 24-year-old women.

Pregnant women experience some of the harshest outcomes from untreated STDs. Washington generally has less than one case of congenital syphilis per year; however, 2016 recorded the highest number of cases since 1992.

The 2017-2019 state budget allocates $3.3 million per year for STD prevention, monitoring, and control.

DOH is working with local public health agencies and community partners to enhance their capacity to investigate and reduce the spread of STDs. Early detection and treatment can interrupt the steady climb of STD rates.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released the 2016 Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance Report.

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