Statistics from the South Dakota Department of Health show that in the first three months of 2015, the Sioux Falls area has seen a concerning number of reported sexually transmitted diseases.

From January through March, there have been 255 cases of chlamydia and 66 cases of gonorrhea in Minnehaha County. The rate of gonorrhea in Minnehaha County has tripled since 2011.

Last year there were  257 cases of gonorrhea in Minnehaha County, the number of cases in 2015 is on track to be even higher. There are a nearly equal number of male and female cases, but the concerning figure is the number of young people impacted.

"Sexually transmitted diseases affect people of all ages, but we see our biggest case numbers in those ages 15 to 24, both in South Dakota and in the nation,” Lon Kightlinger, State Epidemiologist with the South Dakota Department of Health said. “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that age group accounts for half of the 20 million new sexually transmitted infections in the U.S. each year, even though it makes up just a quarter of the sexually active population.”

Approximately 54 percent of STD cases in Sioux Falls are individuals between 20 and 29 years of age.

The numbers of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) and Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are rising across South Dakota as well.

“In the past year, cases of chlamydia were up 25 percent across the state,” Kightlinger said, “and the number of gonorrhea cases has doubled since 2009.”

Find more information about Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) and Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) here. Falls Community Health offers free rapid HIV testing, get info here.

(Source: City of Sioux Falls)