As work to combat the rising rates of sexually transmitted infections (STI) continues, Springfield-Greene County Health has created a new online tool to help people find no cost or affordable testing and treatment services. The STI Testing & Treatment Map will make it easier for people to find appointments and walk-in testing and treatment opportunities for a variety of STIs. This interactive tool will be especially beneficial for those who do not have an established primary care physician or who are not comfortable talking with their regular health care provider about STIs.
According to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, there were nearly 2,900 cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis reported in Greene County in 2022. In 2021 and 2022, the rate of syphilis was nearly triple the annual rate of cases in the previous five years.
Testing for STI’s is an important standard of sexual health and wellbeing. Many STIs can be asymptomatic for years, and even when an STI may not cause visible symptoms it could still be causing damage to the body. According to Mayo Clinic, untreated STIs can lead to infertility, organ damage, cancer and even death. Additionally, someone with an STIs but no symptoms can still spread the infection to others. Routine testing to be the only way an individual may know if they have been infected.
Springfield-Greene County Health recommends that:
- Adults with new or multiple partners be tested for STIs at least once a year.
- Everyone who is pregnant should be tested for STIs early in their pregnancy to prevent serious health complications.
- Those with anonymous partners or other high risk sexual or non-sexual behaviors, like sharing injection drug equipment, may benefit from more frequent testing (e.g., every three to six months), but should be tested at least once a year for HIV.
- People whose partner tells them they tested positive for an STI.
- Those with symptoms that could be due to an STI.
- The safest practice is to make STI testing a routine with each new partner.
It is important to note that some providers, including those who offer testing at no cost, have limits on how often people can access their services. If you have received testing services from a provider within the last year, please consult the provider to ensure that you’re eligible to receive services.
The Health Department offers free STI testing through walk-in hours every Monday and Wednesday from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. STI testing is available by appointment every Tuesday and Thursday. For more information, to make appointments, and to access the STI Testing & Treatment Map, you can visit health.springfieldmo.gov/STI.
Media may contact the Health Department PIO Team by call or text at 417-380-2556 or email at [email protected].
Springfield-Greene County Health Department
“Helping all people live longer, healthier, happier lives.”
health.springfieldmo.gov | facebook.com/SGCHD | twitter.com/SGCHD
227 E. Chestnut Expressway