Skip to main content

Minnesota sees 'disturbingly high' rate of growth in STD cases

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

There were nearly 26,000 cases of sexually transmitted diseases diagnosed in Minnesota last year – an all-time high.

That's according to the Minnesota Department of Health's annual STD report released Monday. The report found there were increases in cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis in 2015, which fueled the rise of STD diagnoses to 25,986.

That's up 6 percent from 2014 and 33 percent from 2010 – a rate of growth Minnesota Commissioner of Health Dr. Ed Ehlinger called "disturbingly high."

Ehlinger stressed the need for "improved education about STDs" for the general public and healthcare providers, annual testing for people who are sexually active to help control the spread of STDs, and suggested making services available for communities that have limited access to STD testing and prevention programs due to "longstanding social, medical or income disadvantages."

“These rates also provide further evidence that eroding basic local public health services not only hurts our ability to respond to intractable problems like STDs, but also to emerging infectious diseases like Zika virus," Ehlinger said in the release.

Here are some findings from the report:

  • The number of cases of chlamydia – the most commonly reported STD – reached a new high in 2015, with 21,238 cases. In the past decade, the chlamydia rate increased by 66 percent.
  • The number of cases of gonorrhea stayed steady in 2015, with 4,097 cases reported.
  • Syphilis rates increased by 3 percent from 2014 to 2015, with officials noting there has been a resurgence of cases over the past decade, especially among two groups: women, and men who have sex with men. Cases involving women jumped 70 percent from 2014 to 2015.
  • People of color are disproportionately affected by STDs, as are adolescents and young adults. Sixty-one percent of new cases of chlamydia and gonorrhea involve people ages 15-24.
  • STD rates continue to be the highest in Minneapolis, but officials note the Twin Cities suburbs and greater Minnesota account for 63 percent of cases reported in 2015.

Under state law, health officials must report cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis and chancroid to the Department of Health. The agency doesn't keep track of other STDs including herpes, HPV and genital warts.

Health officials also track HIV in the state. Those figures are expected to be released on April 27.

For more information on STDs in Minnesota and what health officials are doing to help control the spread, click here. For graphs and more detailed comparisons of who is being most affected by STDs, click here.

Next Up

Semi into house near Sturgis, South Dakota

Semi drives into house near Sturgis, South Dakota

The force from the semi was so strong that the foundation of the house was moved.

ambulance

18-year-old from Zumbrota dies in Goodhue County crash

The crash happened in rural Goodhue County around 8:45 a.m. Wednesday.

thomas beach, bde maka ska - lake calhoun

3 Minneapolis beaches closed due to E. coli contamination

No illnesses have been reported, according to the MPRB.

Hockeyland1

'Hockeyland' documentary debuting in Minnesota movie theaters

The documentary has received great reviews at numerous film festivals.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Former Minnesota Olympic runner accused of driving drunk in Eden Prairie crash

Police said the man's blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit.

ATV

Man, 79, killed in ATV rollover near Faribault

The man was declared dead at the scene.

minneapolis police

Woman fighting for her life after shooting in Minneapolis

The woman was shot only about a half-hour after a 14-year-old suffered critical injuries in an apparent accidental discharge.

prior lake high school

Two students face discipline over racist messages at Prior Lake High School

Families and students were largely uncooperative with the investigation.

Sharon and Herb Vasser

Cause of Hopkins house explosion that killed couple revealed

Sharon and Herb Vassar were killed in the explosion. Herb built the home back in 1962.

Arrows on target

Charges: Minnesota camp counselor fired arrows at kids, injuring boy

An 8-year-old boy was shot in the arm with an arrow.

North Shore Mayor Chris Swanson.

Two Harbors votes overwhelmingly to recall Mayor Chris Swanson

The mayor had been scrutinized for several things leading up to the vote Tuesday.

Screen Shot 2022-08-10 at 8.43.50 AM

Suspected gunman at large after homicide near Albert Lea

The 32-year-old suspect was last seen in a 2004 white Ford F-150 with Minnesota license number EUZ-057.

Related

Medical, medicine, doctor office

Minnesota STD rates decreased last year, but outbreaks concern officials

Overall, HIV and STD rates in Minnesota went down by 2% compared to 2019.

Report sees modest growth in Minnesota economy; construction jobs rebounding

A new report by BMO Capital Markets paints a picture of Minnesota's economy as slowly but surely recovering. The unemployment rate of less than six percent is helped by fresh hiring in the construction industry and an easing of job cuts among government employees. Housing is still considered a weak spot, but at least prices are recovering and there are signs that more building is on the horizon.