Sex infections up in young16th July 2008
Experts have issued a warning over the behaviour of young people after a 6% rise in sexually transmitted infections in the UK.
Figures from the Health Protection Agency show that half of those with infections are in the 16-24 age-group, despite that sector only forming one eighth of the population.
More people are being tested but the HPA says that youngsters still need to be tested more regularly and take more precautions.
A total of 397,990 sexually transmitted diseases (STIs) were diagnosed at clinics across all age groups in the UK in 2007, up from 375,843 in 2006.
The 16-24-year-old age group accounted for 65% of all new chlamydia cases diagnosed in 2007, 55% of genital warts and 50% of gonorrhoea.
Professor Peter Borriello, director of the HPA’s Centre for Infections, said: “It is increasingly the case that many young people see a casual shag as part of the territory, it is part of life.”
A national chlamydia screening programme has seen the number of screens for the disease rise by 10% in the past year and by 61% since 2003.
The Terrence Higgins Trust acknowledged better testing was playing a key role but that young people were still not getting the education they needed to manage their health and relationships.
Opposition MPs said the rise in STIs was linked to cuts in public health cuts.
Health minister Dawn Primolo said the figures were of concern but added that it was important to record that there had been an increase in screening for STIs.
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Title: Sex infections up in young
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 7526
Date Added: 16th Jul 2008