The WA Health Department has launched a three-pronged attack on sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in young Western Australians.
The campaign aims to reduce STI notifications amongst people aged 16 to 24 – a key risk group for STIs.
In 2018/2019 young Western Australians accounted for 50 per cent of chlamydia and 27 per cent of gonorrhoea notifications in WA.
Other Voices promotes safe sex practices and reminds young people that unprotected sex with one person, isn’t just with one person.
Stay Safe You Mob aims to improve STI testing and condom use among young Aboriginal people in WA in response to high notification rates of STIs amongst Aboriginal people.
In 2018/2019 gonorrhoea notifications were 10-times higher among Aboriginal people than non-Aboriginal people and chlamydia notifications were five-times higher.
Look After Your Blood reinforces messages about the prevention and treatment of blood-borne viruses to young Aboriginal people across Western Australia.
It talks about the consequences of sharing needles and reinforces the importance of testing for blood-borne viruses.
In 2018/2019 hepatitis C notification rates were 11 times higher in Aboriginal people.
The Department’s Program Manager for Sexual Health and Blood Borne Viruses, Lisa Bastian, said while the campaign was targeting different groups of young Western Australians, the message was the same.
“Take precautions, practise safe sex and visit a GP or sexual health clinic for a check-up if you have any concerns about being exposed to an STI,” she said.
Young Western Australians can access an online STI self-assessment and advice on treatment at www.couldihaveit.com.au.