Courtesy Wyoming Department of Health


Wyoming’s cases of sexually transmitted diseases have been increasing in recent years and a recent update shows that, despite efforts of health care providers, it’s still a concern. Courtney Smith is the Communicable Disease Program Manager for the Wyoming Department of Health. She tells Bob Beck that they have one key area of concern. 


Wyoming saw higher rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis and other sexual transmitted diseases in 2015 compared to reports from the previous year, according to recent data released by the Department of Health.

The report shows a 3 percent increase in chlamydia cases and a 150 percent rise in gonorrhea. Young people aged 15 to 24 accounted for a majority of these infections, which health officials say can have lasting health impacts.

Dec. 1 is World AIDS Day, and the Wyoming Department of Health is urging sexually active Wyomingites to get tested for STDs.

Epidemiologist Courtney Smith says it’s easier to contract HIV if you already have another STD.

“If people are already infected with an STD, it can cause things such as a chancre or a sore that can kind of cause a pathway for HIV to transmit through,” Smith said.

Smith says that anyone who is sexually active should get tested annually, and adds that they should also get tested any time they have a new partner.

It’s Sexually Transmitted Disease awareness month and in Wyoming this is a serious issue.  Statistics show that STDs in the state are on the rise.  A number of health care organizations are trying to get sexually active people tested for STDs and to check their HIV status.  Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains is engaged in a campaign called GYT – get yourself tested.   Melody Meanor is the Manager of Planned Parenthood’s Casper Health Center.  She says the sharp increase in STD’s in Wyoming is alarming.