Stay Healthy This Summer, and “Check The Pulse”
The Kansas City metro area has one statistic about the months of June and July, and it’s not a pleasant one. STD’s show much higher transmission rates during the months of June and July. Sound surprising? Not really since that is a typical trend nationwide. For many, the summer months are a time to party at circuit parties, festivals and vacations where one might throw caution to the wind.
This year you can work hard to help reduce the statistics. There will be health providers at the Pride Festival offering information and more. The Kansas City Health Department will be offering free, confidential HIV testing and Hepatitis A&B vaccinations. June 27 has also been designated as National HIV Testing Day, sponsored by The National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA-US). There are an estimated 300,000 people in the U.S. that are HIV positive and don’t know it. Visit the booths and learn more.
The web offers a wealth of information. At the site for the National HIV Testing Resources, you can find HIV testing locations near you simply by typing in your zip code and radius of miles near you and it will show all locations with their information. The Office of Minority Health offers information in English and Spanish.
For more information on these online resources visit:
National Association of People with AIDS: www.napwa.org/hivtestinfo
National HIV Testing Resources: www.hivtest.org
Center for Disease Control: www.cdc.gov
The Office of Minority Health (bi-lingual Spanish/English site): www.omhrc.gov .
If you’ve been reading Camp and other publications you’re already aware of the fact that syphilis cases have been increasing. Here’s what they show for 2005. Total syphilis cases reported to Kansas City Health Department in 2005 - 94. Number of men – 84. Number of women – 10. Of the 84 men, 62 were self-identified as MSM (men having sex with men). Of that group, 46 were HIV positive. 10 of the 46 men were newly identified HIV positive. There are currently 25 cases in 2006 compared to 23 cases at this time last year.
Wyandotte County reports that they usually see the same type of statistics although the numbers are typically 1/3 of those reported by the Kansas City Health Department. Their statistics for the Kansas City Metro Kansas Side, including Wyandotte, Johnson and Leavenworth Counties comparing 2005 and the same periods of 2005/2006 fortunately show syphilis cases down this year:
In addition to getting tested at the Pride Festival and finding out more information this weekend, listed below are some additional offices. For information on other cities and counties in your locale that offer free, anonymous HIV tests, visit www.hivtest.org
Kansas City Health Department
4700 Troost, Kansas City, MO • www.kcmo.org/health
The Sexually Transmitted Disease Clinic serves persons who have or who have been exposed to sexually transmitted diseases. The clinic is available by walk-in. For more information or clinic hours, please call (816) 513-6117.
Kansas City Free Health Clinic
3515 Broadway, Kansas City, MO • (816) 753-5144 • www.kcfree.org
Provides free and anonymous HIV testing. Hours vary. Call our visit website for days and hours.
Wyandotte County Health Department
619 Anne Avenue, Kansas City, KS 66101 • (913) 573-6716
M-F (except Thursday). Walk-in Clinic. 8:30 am - 3:30 pm.
Thursday. 8:30-11:00 am and 3:30-6:00 pm. Fees based on a sliding scale basis.
Healthy Living Project
Saeger House, 7725 W. 87th St., Overland Park, KS • (913) 708-1414.
The Healthy Living Staff offers a monthly confidential testing time on the First Tuesday from 5:30 to 7pm. For more information and directions visit: www.4healthlivingproject.org.
Check The Pulse
“The Pulse” Health Survey for the LGBT community is back! Launched in 2003 through a partnership of the Kansas City Health Department, the Lesbian and Gay Community Center, other organizations and volunteers in the community, it was the first comprehensive survey for the LGBT community offered in Kansas City.
Why is it needed? The Health Department and local health agencies rely on the statistical data for federal funding of grants and knowledge on health specifically related to the LGBT community. “Check The Pulse” 2006 will be at Gay Pride this year. Surveys cover all elements of health not just STD’s. Your participation is totally anonymous and invaluable. Over 1,000 survey results will be necessary for the survey to be a success. Make sure and stop by the Health Department and Lesbian and Gay Community Center Booths at Pride and “Check the Pulse”.