STIs That Are Nationally Notifiable Diseases

Nationally notifiable diseases are diseases that healthcare providers are required to report to their local health department. This information is then disclosed to the state health department, which notifies the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Some nationally notifiable diseases, like chickenpox and lead poisoning, are not sexually transmitted. Others, like chlamydia and syphilis, are.

Reporting these diseases to the government allows for their incidence to be monitored and tracked. This information is important, as accurate and efficient reporting can help identify outbreaks, as well as help guide decisions and resource allocations that can help protect citizens as early as possible.

This process is designed to balance privacy and public health.

Hospital staff discussing patient charts
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STIs on the Nationally Notifiable Diseases Reporting List

There are several sexually transmitted infections (STIs) on the nationally notifiable diseases reporting list. As of 2021, the reportable STIs are:

STIs are not nationally notifiable diseases because the government wants to invade your privacy. They're nationally notifiable diseases because the government has a vested interest in protecting the public health.

It is possible to reduce the spread of STIs through regular screening, prompt treatment, and efficient contact tracing. Being aware of any concentrated epidemics or new outbreaks allows the government to intervene with prevention and/or treatment measures most efficiently.

For example, it was at least in part due to national disease reporting systems that scientists became aware of the HIV epidemic among heterosexual, African American residents of Washington DC.

In the first decade of the 2000s, the population of the nation's capital had HIV levels similar to those seen in Sub-Saharan Africa. This realization led to a number of targeted interventions designed at improving prevention, testing, and treatment in the District.

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  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2021 national notifiable conditions.

  2. Greenberg AE, Hader SL, Masur H, Young AT, Skillicorn J, Dieffenbach CW. Fighting HIV/AIDS in Washington, D.C. Health Aff (Millwood). 2009;28(6):1677-1687. doi:10.1377/hlthaff.28.6.1677