Contact: Black Hawk County Health Department
STD Awareness Week
Black Hawk County Public Health is recognizing National STD Awareness Week, April 10-16 with a campaign to encourage testing, treatment, and conversations with your partners. All week long, Black Hawk County Public Health staff is sharing sexual health information on department social media and taking STD information to local campuses.
This campaign is timely, as Iowa is seeing some of its highest rates of infections in years. According to Iowa Department o Public Health, the rate of syphilis in the state increased by 55% in 2021. Similarly ,Black Hawk County’s syphilis cases doubled between 2019 and 2020. The county routinely also reports one of the highest rates in the state for both chlamydia and gonorrhea.
Black Hawk County Public Health Clinic Manager Tonya Wilder stresses the importance of getting testing both for short term relief of infections, but also long-term health benefits. “The most important reason to get tested for sexually transmitted infections is to prevent complications. If left untreated, infections can cause long term damage to reproductive organs, fertility issues, and complications during pregnancy.”
Testing for an STD is free, easy, and confidential through the Black Hawk County Public Health Center. The clinic offers multi-site testing for more reliable results, and most infections can be treated with a simple antibiotic. Treatment is provided at no cost, and often medication can be sent home to treat the partner as well. The Public Health Center clinic is located on the 5th floor of the Pinecrest Building at 1407 Independence Avenue, Waterloo. Clinic hours are Monday- Thursday from 8:30 -11:30 am and 1-4 pm. Call 319-291-2413 for an appointment. Satellite testing is also available, and locations are listed on the Health Department website.
Black Hawk County Public Health exists to ensure that people in our community have equitable opportunities and resources to lead healthier, more fulfilling, and longer lives. Established in 1969, the health department's mission is to protect people in our community from health hazards, promote healthy behaviors, and prevent disease. Black Hawk County Public Health was accredited by the National Public Health Accreditation Board in 2022. For more information about health department services visit the Black Hawk County Public Health website.