Talk. Test. Treat.
Sexual Health Promotion
Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), also known as sexually transmitted infections or STIs, are very common. Millions of new infections occur every year in the United States.
STDs are passed from one person to another through sexual activity including vaginal, oral, and anal sex. They can also be passed from one person to another through intimate physical contact, such as heavy petting, though this is not very common.
STDs don’t always cause symptoms or may only cause mild symptoms, so it is possible to have an infection and not know it. That is why it is important to get tested if you are having sex. If you are diagnosed with an STD, know that all can be treated with medicine and some can be cured entirely.
STDs are preventable. If you have sex, know how to protect yourself and your sexual partner from STDs.
The only way to avoid sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is to not have vaginal, anal, or oral sex. If you are sexually active, you can do several things to lower your chances of getting an STD, including:
- Get tested for STDs and encourage your partner(s) to do the same. It is important to have an honest and open talk with your healthcare provider and ask whether you should be tested for STDs. Your healthcare provider can offer you the best care if you discuss your sexual history openly. Find an STD testing site.
- Get vaccinated. Vaccines are safe, effective, and recommended ways to prevent hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and HPV.
- Be in a sexually active relationship with only one person, who has agreed to be sexually active only with you.
- Reduce your number of sex partners. By doing so, you decrease your risk for STDs. It is still important that you and your partner get tested, and that you share your test results with one another.
- Use a condom every time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex. Correct and consistent use of the male latex condom is highly effective in reducing STD transmission.
Talking about sex may not be a regular part of your doctor-patient relationship, but it should be. This can be especially true for adolescents and young adults who are disproportionately impacted by sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Half of all new STD cases are in young people between the ages of 15 and 24. This video discusses the importance of a healthy dialogue between youth and providers concerning their sexual health and features CDC Epidemiologist, Elizabeth Torrone, Ph.D. MSPH. (November 30, 2012)
Update: August, 2021
HHF CARS Program
Shaping Tomorrow’s Leaders Today: Community Sexual Health Program Cultivates Leadership Skills in Youth
Humanity & Health Foundation’s strategy is fashioned on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Community Approaches to Reducing Sexually Transmitted Diseases (CARS), which allows youth to be the decision-making body and support them with appropriate training on sexual health, social determinants of health, advocacy, team building, decision-making, and other outreach activities.
We offer :
- funding training sessions for our Youth Empowerment Program HHFYEP members;
- sponsor a number of outreach events such as information sessions
on teen pregnancy
- conduct condom demonstrations and provide handouts at our community health fairs.
We also support a collaborative project between the foundation, local institutions, hospitals, and health centers.
The CAR project develops guidelines for chlamydia and gonorrhea testing among youth during routine outreach activities with the hopes of making these tests easier and more accessible. We encourage the youth members to play an active role in all of these efforts. By recruiting youth into these community outreach activities, we are shaping future leaders through unique leadership opportunities.
Through CARS participation, youths gain skills related to identifying community needs as well as enhanced awareness of the importance of structural level change. These future leaders are also learning valuable lessons in teamwork and how to be active advocates and agents of change. These are skills that will have
lifelong value. Contact us to support them or be a part of the CAR program
Collaboration & Linkage
At the core of CDC’s CARS Program is the principle of collaboration – between providers and the communities they serve – to promote health equity and community wellness, this is embedded in the Humanity & Health Foundation strategic planning.
Collaborations are carried out through community advisory boards that leverage
provider and community resources and expertise.
We also work to link clients to care. If you are a healthcare provider specialized in public health promotion and have the resources to treat those diagnosed with STDs, use the link below to add your company/health center to our database., and email us with your intention to be a part of our CARS program.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Sexually Transmitted Disease and Should I be Tested?
CDC estimates that there are approximately 19 million new sexually transmitted disease (STD) infections each year — almost half of them among young people 15 to 24 years of age. Most infections have no symptoms and often go undiagnosed and untreated, which may lead to severe health consequences, especially for women.
Knowing your STD status is a critical step to stopping STD transmission. If you know you are infected you can take steps to protect yourself and your partners. Many STDs can be easily diagnosed and treated. If either you or your partner is infected, both of you may need to receive treatment at the same time to avoid getting re-infected.
What is Duty to Warn?
Does Duty to Warn apply to Healthcare Providers and STD Diagnoses?
- A “duty to warn” exists across various United States (U.S.) jurisdictions. Within the healthcare field, “duty to warn” can create an obligation for healthcare providers to warn people who are not their patients (e.g., third parties) of a serious threat of harm based on conversations with their patient.
- It has been suggested that this duty may extend to infectious diseases, including sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
- This analysis suggests that:
- In a few U.S. jurisdictions, an STD diagnosis may create various physician duties that indirectly extend to people who are not their patients.
- However, a direct “duty to warn” third parties that they may need a medical examination because of their potential STD exposure was not found across states, despite its existence for other serious medical conditions.