Gila County Has The Highest Rate Of New Syphilis Cases In Arizona

By Mythili Gubbi
Published: Friday, April 12, 2019 - 8:12am
Updated: Thursday, April 25, 2019 - 2:37pm
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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Syphilis, which is caused by the bacterium, Treponema pallidum (pictured), is passed from person to person through direct contact with a syphilis sore.

It is Sexually Transmitted Disease Awareness Month and Arizona has a higher rate of syphilis than the national average.

Gila County has the highest rate of new syphilis cases in Arizona.

In 2017, the county reported a rate of 97 per 100,000 people for the sexually transmitted disease. This is well above the Arizona rate of 23 reported cases per 100,000 people.

Joshua Beck, the Gila County Division of Health and Emergency Management, said “a lot of times with these cases they come specifically from the San Carlos Apache Reservation. And a lot of times you know due to school and work outside the reservation, even though they are San Carlos cases, they’ll spread out into Globe-Miami as well.”

“It’s a little more difficult often times to get the people on the tribal reservations to come to a clinic or to a hospital to take the medications to do the treatment,” he added.

This is because they might be in remote areas with inadequate facilities.

The number of syphilis cases in Arizona continues to rise.

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