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Covering STDs: What reporters need to know

After decades of decline, the number of people diagnosed with many sexually transmitted diseases in the U.S. began steadily rising in 2000. Five years ago, the number of cases sharply increased. Between 2013 and 2017, STD cases were up 31 percent.

The reasons for the increases are multi-faceted. They include decreased public health funding, lack of understanding about how STDs spread, social stigma, less access to health care and fewer health provider screenings. Social determinants also play a role in which populations are more at risk of exposure to an STD and whether they get treatment. Further, the opioid epidemic has been associated with increase in STDs among pregnant women, said David C. Harvey, executive director of the National Coalition of STD Directors during a Nov. 1 AHCJ webcast.

Learn more about the increase, story ideas, sources and experts to tap into for your reporting.

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