MADISON COUNTY, Ala. - The increasing number of people with sexually transmitted diseases is a national problem. Here in Alabama, Madison County has a high number of cases. Over the last few years Madison County has seen a gradual increase.
Dr. Lawrence Robey with the Madison County Health Department says, "In 2014 we had over 2,000 cases reported in this county." And that number represents only the reported cases. Dr. Robey says that around two or three times that many have not even been reported.
The majority of the people affected are young adults and teens; usually between the ages of 18 to 25. Here in Madison County, they are having problems with a different age group. "Well there is sort of a blip that we are beginning to see in people over the age of 50. We are not sure whether this is due to the change of the demographics as the baby boomers are aging and falling into that category or where there is something else a foot," says Dr. Robey.
Numbers and age groups are changing but the same problem remains. Dr. Robey explains, "Treatment has not changed... The tests are even getting better and what we are seeing is a failure of prevention." The majority of people are not using protection and a lot of people who have the diseases do not even realize it.
Dr. Robey suggests, "our advice to people is to get in a stable relationship and if you are not going to do that use some type of barrier proof." If you are nervous about one of your sexual partners make sure to get tested before being sexually active again.
The Madison County Health Department offers free testing. Call and schedule an appointment at (256) 539-3711.