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STD-Treatment Cost Soars among Young

According to a report, treating 15-to 24- years-olds for venereal disease in San Diego County, cost about $110 million in 2005, higher than every county in the state except Los Angeles.

An estimated 85,000 teens and young adults diagnosed with sexually transmitted diseases were lower per capita in San Diego County than the state average, 17 percent, compared with 20 percent. On the other hand, diseases diagnosed in the county's youths and young adults are more expensive to treat.

“San Diego (County) has a greater number of Chlamydia, gonorrhea and AIDS cases in the state, and that drives the cost,” said Petra Jerman of the Public Health Institute in Oakland, a nonprofit group that issued the report.

Drugs and hospitalization to treat those diseases are more expensive than for syphilis, human papillomavirus, genital herpes, hepatitis B and trichomoniasis, said Jerman, the lead author.

1 million STD cases reported among young people in 2005. Direct medical costs totaled $1.

The project, funded by the California Wellness Foundation, used a difficult formula based on state and federal statistics to compute the cost and burden of venereal disease on every county.

One peculiarity the researchers discovered: Orange County, similar to San Diego County in population and many other demographics, reported 53,566 STD cases among young people, nearly 32,000 fewer than in San Diego County. Researchers were uncertain of the reasons for the dissimilarity.

In Orange County, the charge of treating those patients was $57 million.



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