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New study finds disparities in chlamydia screening

November 12, 2015

A medical history of STDs was more important than race or ethnicity or insurance status in terms of differences in chlamydia screening. Young women who had a previous STD were more likely to be screened for chlamydia, no matter their race or ethnicity, and differences by race or ethnicity in testing decreased substantially in this subgroup. The same was not true for young women who had been pregnant in the past. After a pregnancy, young minority women were much more likely (24 times for Hispanic women and 4 times for black women) to be screened than young white women.

"Even when we accounted for provider-level differences in testing patterns, the bias to screen black and Hispanic young women persisted. We must encourage pediatricians, internists, family medicine physicians and gynecologists to screen all sexually active young women under their care. Chlamydia is a serious and usually asymptomatic disease that may have serious health repercussions," said Dr. Wiehe, a pediatrician and health services researcher.

Source: Indiana University School of Medicine