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By Anthony Gaither | News Writer
The number of reported chlamydia cases at UK this year is predicted to set a record for University Health Service.
Chlamydia cases on campus are expected to surpass 200, said Brandy Reeves, health education coordinator for University Health Service.
“Confirmed chlamydia cases this year will set a new record for the most cases since we began keeping track in 2006,” Reeves said.
The 200 cases only include students who got tested at UHS. Full-time UK students may receive free access to sexually transmitted disease testing at the UHS building, and Reeves recommended students take advantage of this service.
“Experimenting with drugs and alcohol leads to higher sexual behavior risks” Reeves said.
India Stewart, peer health educator at UK, said chlamydia, syphilis and gonorrhea are the most common STDs in the U.S., and one in four people will be diagnosed with an STD in their lifetime.
Fifty percent of the people who are diagnosed each year are under the age of 25, Stewart added.
“Coming out of high school, students aren’t highly sexually educated,” Stewart said. “Here in college we are all sort of just thrown together.”
Blake Flaugher, HIV prevention specialist at AIDS Volunteers, Inc., agreed that a shortage of information is partially responsible for the spread of STDs.
“The problem is that people don’t want to talk about sex before having it,” Flaugher said. “Usually when people are infected it’s because of the lack of sexual education.”