Planned Parenthood, MTV, Kaiser Family Foundation
Use Multimedia Approach to Promote STD Testing for Young People
To Reduce Alarming STD Infection Rates
Planned Parenthood Arizona is proud to participate in a nationwide campaign with MTV and the Kaiser Family Foundation and to officially unveil “GYT: Get Yourself Tested,” a campaign to increase testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among those under 25 years of age.
In Arizona, we know that one in every four teenage girls (ages 14-17) has a sexually transmitted infection, and many of them don’t even know they are infected, where to get treatment or how to protect themselves.
GYT kicks off with a mix of promotions on-air, online and in the real world that will unfold throughout the month of April in recognition of National STD Awareness Month. The central hub of the campaign, GYT09.org, will provide comprehensive information about STDs and will direct users to the nearest testing location simply by entering a zip code. A mobile companion to GYT09.org, the GYT short code (49809), provides details about local testing locations to mobile phones by texting a zip code.
Being tested on an annual basis is a healthy habit for anyone who is sexually active. From April 1, 2009 to April 30, 2009 Planned Parenthood Arizona will offer discounted STD testing every Tuesday and Wednesday. Patients can pay $20 for gonorrhea and chlamydia testing; and, for an additional $5 they can also have HIV screening done.
“Most people would be shocked to hear that, by age 25, one in two sexually active young people will have an STD. This is not just a statistic, but the reality of what Planned Parenthood health centers see every day,” said Planned Parenthood Arizona President Bryan Howard. “The GYT campaign is an excellent opportunity for people to learn what Planned Parenthood knows — that affordable testing and treatment and education are the tools teens and young people need to stay healthy and safe.”
From OMG to LOL, acronyms saturate young people’s everyday vernacular, acting as common methods of communication. Playing off mobile and Web slang, GYT is an easy way for young people to talk about sexual health and getting tested for STDs. GYT will help young people internalize the risk of STDs and eliminate taboos and stigmas surrounding STDs and STD testing.
Infections like gonorrhea and chlamydia don’t always have symptoms; and, if left untreated could lead to more serious health problems, including sterilization. More than 90 percent of Planned Parenthood Arizona’s services are preventive health care and education. Sexually active individuals should make STD and HIV screening part of their annual health check-up.
To make an appointment, call:
602.277.PLAN (7526) if you live in Phoenix,
520.624.1761 if you live in Tucson,
800.230.PLAN (7526) from anywhere in the state
For more information on the importance of getting yourself tested visit our website at http://www.ppaz.org/.
Planned Parenthood Arizona is the leading sexual health organization in Arizona. The organization provides health care, education and outreach services to over 100,000 men, women, teens and parents annually. Planned Parenthood Arizona operates 20 health center locations in Phoenix, Tucson, Flagstaff, Globe, Prescott and Yuma. For more information, please visit http://www.ppaz.org/.