Health February 23, 2024 | 2:37 pm

PARLACEN urges Central American countries to address rising STD cases

The Central American Parliament (PARLACEN) has approved an initiative put forward by the Dominican representative, Dr. Namibia Didiez Ogando, urging Central American Integration System (SICA) countries to establish an action program for the prevention and control of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in the general population, considering the recent rise in cases.

The resolution notes that over one million people contract an STD daily, with a majority being asymptomatic. Annually, approximately 374 million people contract curable STDs, including chlamydiasis, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis.

The proposed program, to be implemented in the region, including the Dominican Republic, is to be based on a public health and human rights approach. It aims to employ innovative strategies for education, health promotion, research, prevention, training, detection, epidemiological surveillance, and comprehensive care for STDs.

The resolution recommends that the Council of Ministers of Health of Central America and the Dominican Republic adopt common and specific measures for managing these diseases, supported by actions from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Health coverage is emphasized in the resolution, ensuring protection against financial risks and better access to quality essential health services. The expansion of vaccination programs against human papillomaviruses and hepatitis B is also encouraged, along with operational research for introducing new vaccines.

The resolution guides the health sector in applying strategic responses to control STDs, considering the epidemiological context and technological advances. It suggests promoting education and awareness campaigns in various sectors, focusing on vulnerable populations such as women, adolescents, sex workers, people with multiple partners, prisoners, children living on the streets, and drug users.

In addition, the initiative recommends fostering learning in all areas of these diseases and capitalizing on innovations and new knowledge for a more effective response to STDs. Education and awareness campaigns are also suggested for the general population, educational centers, primary health care centers, clubs, worker associations, media, churches, neighborhood associations, and other influential groups in society.

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