Published: | Updated: 04.11.12
Hawthorne, NY –Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic (PPHP) is offering special discounted services at its health centers in Westchester, Rockland, Suffolk, and Putnam counties to help reduce the alarming rate of sexually transmitted infections (STDs) among young people in the U.S., and to encourage youth to GYT – Get Yourself Tested – during April’s STD Awareness Month.
PPHP is offering free HIV testing with a paid visit at any one of its 12 health centers in the four counties. In addition, the HPV vaccine Gardasil is available to young women and men up to age 26 at all PPHP health centers, with a single paid visit.
During last April's GYT campaign, Planned Parenthood health centers tested almost 125,000 men and women.
As many as one in two sexually active young people will contract an STD by age 25 – and most won’t know it. “That’s why it is so vital that young people protect themselves and protect their partners” said Vanessa Gorelkin, Senior Vice President, Operations at PPHP.
STD is a major health issue that can be easily detected and cured. Unfortunately, 2010 chlamydia rates have increased steadily since 2005 by 52% in Suffolk County, 74% in Westchester County, 40% in Rockland County, and 69% in Putnam County. The award-winning GYT campaign is focused on getting sexually active Americans under age 25 to embrace STD testing as part of a healthy, productive life. According to the CDC, this age group represents half of the estimated 19 million sexually transmitted infections that occur in the United States each year. When left untreated, STD's can increase the risk of HIV infection, infertility and cancer.
For more information, visit www.GYTNOW.org. To find a PPHP health center near you, visit www.pphp.org or call 1-800-230-PLAN (7526).
Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic, Inc (PPHP) is the 16th largest affiliate of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and operates 12 health centers in Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, and Putnam Counties. In 2011, PPHP provided services to over 30,000 patients in over 57,000 visits. We conducted over 1,600 education and training programs, reaching over 26,000 youth and adults, and mobilized over 15,000 advocates to protect reproductive health care rights. PPHP has served the community for 79 years, and is dedicated to educating and empowering individuals to make responsible choices regarding their sexuality and sexual health. Planned Parenthood has done more to reduce the incidence of abortion and unintended pregnancy than any other health care provider or advocacy group. PPHP is headquartered in Hawthorne NY. For more information about PPHP services and programs, visit www.pphp.org. Find us on Facebook and MySpace, and follow us on Twitter.
 Cates JR, Herndon NL, Schulz S L, Darroch JE. (2004). Our voices, our lives, our futures: Youth and sexually transmitted diseases. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Journalism and Mass Communication.