Young adults in Metro Atlanta, Georgia, are estimated to account for a half of the 20,000,000 new sexually transmitted diseases that occur in the U.S. annually (CDC, 2015). These data suggest the immediate need to develop and introduce an efficient STDs prevention program, directed at young adults, paying special attention to prevention among African Americans, who account for 77% of new AIDS cases in the state (Cfgreateratlanta, 2015).
Primary prevention of sexually transmitted diseases should start with changing the sexual culture and behaviors that increase the risk for infection in young adults. This may be done by promoting abstention among adolescents, encouraging long-term monogamous relationship with a healthy partner among young adults, or persuading to use condoms (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014). Primary prevention may be conducted through educating and informing selected population about STDs and related dangers. Spreading informative videos through social networks that are currently popular among teenagers and young adults in Metro Atlanta (such as Facebook) should become an efficient prevention strategy. Such videos should educate young population that the majority of STDs can be efficiently treated and stress the necessity of early intervention, as a complication preventive measure. Young girls and women should be informed that for them, signs of STDs may not be noticed until the arrival of complications. Description of recognizable symptoms and signs should be provided, along with a list of phone numbers, online support communities and hospitals, where young people may receive counseling. Another efficient primary prevention strategy is spreading online a personal STDs risk assessment tool (Stdwizard, 2015). By anonymously answering a dozen of questions, an individual finds out if one is in a risk group for STDs. Young adults in the risk group are subsequently provided with advice to use condoms consistently and correctly, receive information where free condom samples may be obtained, encouraged to lead drug and alcohol free lifestyle, or consider existing vaccination against STIs (for instance, hepatitis B) (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014).
Secondary STDs prevention involves provision of care and treatment for already infected young adults. This may include promotion of treatment seeking directed both at individuals showing STD symptoms and those in a risk group of acquiring STDs, provision of anonymous and effective clinical services, counseling and support for infected young adults (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014).
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention. (2015). Adolescents and Young Adults. Cdc.gov. Retrieved 17 December 2015, from http://www.cdc.gov/std/life-stages-populations/adolescents-youngadults.htm
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention. (2015). CDC – Clinical Prevention Guidance – 2010 STD Treatment Guidelines. Cdc.gov. Retrieved 17 December 2015, from http://www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010/clinical.htm
- Cfgreateratlanta. (2015). The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta – Diseases, Disorders–HIV/AIDS. Cfgreateratlanta.org. Retrieved 17 December 2015, from http://www.cfgreateratlanta.org/Issues/Diseases-Disorders-HIVAIDS.aspx
- Stanhope, M., & Lancaster, J. (2014). Public health nursing; Population-centered health care in the community. Philadelphia: Mosby Elsevier.
- Stdwizard (2015). Online STD Wizard- A private, safe, and secure way to determine your risk factors. Stdwizard.org. Retrieved 17 December 2015, from http://www.stdwizard.org/#/home