Students unaware of STD superbug

Liz Ortiz
Staff Writer

A new issue recently emerged in the realm of sexually transmitted diseases – there is now a strain of antibiotic resistant gonorrhea.

The once easily treatable bacterial infection is now presenting issues because a strain has developed antibiotic resistance to one of the two antibiotics that commonly treats it, according to World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control.

“They have found that it is resistant, but it’s not an epidemic,” director of student health services and services for students with disabilities Cynthia Denne said.

“At this point the Center for Disease and Control is not making any changes in protocol.”

The new superbug does not pose as a threat to the United States at this point.

There have been no reported cases of the superbug in the country, but there have been reported cases in Australia, France, Japan, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom, according to WHO’s website.

Denne said that the University’s health center will not be changing their approach to treating STDs. She recommends that all students should be tested twice a year or when they become sexually active with a new partner.

“Ideally the only way not to contract an STD is to be abstinent, but we do not live in an ideal world. Students need to use condoms; they need to protect themselves,” Denne said.

According to an informal survey 15 out of the 15 students who were surveyed did not have any prior knowledge about the antibiotic resistant strain of the infection.

“You don’t think about STDs in your everyday life, but it freaks me out to know that it’s becoming untreatable,” senior international studies major Chelsea Morin said.

“It doesn’t personally impact me, but I know there are people who are irresponsible, so they need to be made aware of the issue.”

Students said that they take the proper initiative to prevent themselves from contracting an STD, but the health center should take initiative and better inform the student body about the new strain of gonorrhea.

“I think it will be a serious concern when it becomes a domestic issue,” junior political science major Anthony Reyes said.

“Until then, the international community should provide resources for one another and work on discovering an alternative treatment option.”

Liz Ortiz can be reached at elizabeth.ortiz@laverne.edu.

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