HIV cases increase by as much as 56%
Ireland is in the midst of a public health crisis as the five most common sexually transmitted infections have all noticed a sharp rise since 2013. Chlamydia, gonorrhoea, herpes, syphilis and HIV all noticed significantly higher annual diagnosis rates in 2018, when compared to five years ago.
Perhaps the most concerning figures are HIV rates. In 2013, there were 339 new cases of HIV recorded in Ireland, that figure increased to 530 last year. This represents an increase of 56% in comparison to 2013. Even more concerning still is the fact that HIV rates declined in the 10 years prior to 2013.
Potentially fatal syphilis case
Other conditions which noticed a significant rise in diagnosis included syphilis with 512 new cases noticed last year. This was an 88% increase compared to 2013, when just 272 cases were noticed.
One of the most concerning factors for many health professionals is that one case of syphilis progressed beyond the primary infection stage into the tertiary or final stage. Final stage syphilis is potentially life threatening and it was reported to have caused severe medical issues for the patient involved. It’s very rare in modern times for syphilis to go undetected for so long.
Cases of gonorrhoea rose by a similar amount to syphilis during the same period. There were 2407 new cases in comparison to 1282 new cases in 2013.
Chlamydia remains the most common sexually transmitted infection in Ireland with 7942 new cases reported in comparison to 6246 in 2013. Herpes cases have also risen, with 350 new cases in comparison to the 2013 figures.
Health officials concerned
The HSE in Ireland are said to be concerned about the latest figures which come despite significant investment in public health and education campaigns. HIV Ireland director Niall Mulligan warned last year that the detection rates were a major concern and that figures emerging from 2018 were amongst the worst he’d seen. He said: “It is very disconcerting that we are almost becoming accepting of this.
In response to the latest figures, STD testing centres in Ireland are now increasing their screening hours and have urged people to get checked for STDs regularly to prevent the spread of STDs. Anyone who believes they’ve come into contact with an STD should abstain from sex until they’ve been treated.
If you’re still struggling to find a clinic to get checked in Ireland, Your Sexual Health have a number of private STD clinics in the Dublin area. Our service is 100% discreet and confidential, allowing you to get tested in a comfortable private clinic environment.
We offer a wide range of private sexual health tests against all sexually transmitted infections. We also have a number of Early Detection tests which allow you to diagnose HIV just 10 days following exposure. For more information on any of our testing options contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: Irish Independent