12 Dec 2015

STI rates high in some communities

8:49 am on 12 December 2015

The latest data on sexually transmitted infections shows more needs to be done to improve access to testing and treatment, Family Planning says.

A young woman - sad or upset - sits on a bench with her head in her hands.

Photo: 123RF

Figures from the annual surveillance report for 2014 showed chlamydia was the most commonly diagnosed STI in New Zealand.

The data showed the national chlamydia rate was decreasing.

Eighty-three percent of cases were among 15 to 29 year olds, with the highest rates among Māori females aged 15-19.

Family Planning chief executive Jackie Edmond said it was concerning STI rates remained high in some communities.

"Everyone working in sexual health knows that we have much more work to do in both testing and treatment.

"For example, we are planning to trial drop-in and opportunistic STI testing - where people can drop in to a clinic, complete a registration form and quick questionnaire and leave a urine sample for testing.

"Once the test results are in our nurses can contact the client with details and arrange for them to have treatment if necessary."

Work was underway to start a national action plan with the Ministry of Health.