CAPE GIRARDEAU (WSIL) -- Sexually transmitted diseases are on the rise in Cape Girardeau, according to the local health department.
The Cape Girardeau County Public Health Center is seeing an increase in positive STD tests at the health center.
"In general we're seeing roughly about a 25 percent increase from 2019 to 2020," says Amber Grant, Public Health Nurse.
According to data from the health department's STD walk in Clinic, the increase includes multiple types of STDs.
"Usually Chlymydia, is usually our higher STD as far as overall but we're seeing increases in even the Gonorrhea, HIV and Syphilis as well," explains Grant.
Grant says there a variety of causes that could be responsible for the uptick in numbers. "There's a couple different things. One of the things may be that with last year with the pandemic, we were not getting together for parties, getting together for groups so people could've been potentially looking for that one on one close contact."
Grant says there are ways to protect yourself. "One of the important ways to stay safe is abstinance if possible. If that's not,condoms are a great way as well. There's both female and male condoms that are available and then as far as testing it's recommended a minimum of once a year to get tested."
The Health Center holds a S-T-D walk-in clinic every Tuesday from 1 to 4 P.M. The cost is 35 dollars and includes confidential screening, treatment and counseling.