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Mon February 6, 2012

DUPAGE COUNTY-The DuPage County Health Department reminds county residents that a large number of Americans don't know that they are infected with HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), but the health department offers a clinic for people to get tested for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and get treatment if necessary.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 1.2 million Americans have the HIV virus-which causes AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome)-but 240,000 of that group don't know they are infected.
To help people learn their HIV status, the health department's STD Clinic offers confidential, routine screening for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis and HIV. A focused physical exam for other STDs and treatment, if needed, is also available.  Screenings are by appointment only.  The fee is $50, and parental consent is not required for persons 12 years of age and older (per Illinois state law).
In DuPage County, two out of three cases of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea occur in people under 25 years old. DuPage County cases of Chlamydia have risen 81 percent since 2000.
Most STDS do not have any symptoms. If you are sexually active, get tested for STDs once a year and more frequently if you have a new sexual partner.
Residents should also know the "ABCs" when it comes to protecting themselves from STDs:

·         Abstinence. The only 100 percent way to protect against a STD and unwanted pregnancy is to not have sex.

·         Be faithful. Being in a monogamous relationship with your partner can reduce the risk of STD transmission.

·         Condoms. They protect against STDs and unwanted pregnancy.    

For more information, or to schedule an appointment, please call the Health Department at (630) 682-7400.  
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