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More education needed to prevent spread of STDs, expert says

Category: Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Encouraging individuals to seek STD testing and treating those infected have been the primary components of most public health responses to the issue of STDs. However, some experts are saying that state efforts need to look beyond these aspects of prevention.

Ricky Waite, a local member of the Texas HIV/STD Prevention Community Planning Group, told Lubbock Online that education is the real key. When people become better informed about sexually transmitted infections it begins to chip away attitudes that may get in the way of effective preventative approaches.

"We can no longer just have [testing and treatment] as our only prevention. We have to start looking at 'How does this affect HIV prevention?' We have to look at community organizations such as schools ... [and] stigma, from family and friends to social networks," he told the news source.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that regular STD testing of all sexually active individuals is one of the best methods for preventing the spread of infections. However, individuals are unlikely to get themselves screened if they are unaware that their behavior puts them at risk. This is why education can play such an important role in prevention.

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