"We have seen steep and sustained increases over the last five years", said Dr. Gail Bolan, director of the Division of STD Prevention at the CDC.
The new numbers from the CDC show that chlamydia is common, but there is a concerning rise in cases of gonorrhea and syphilis.
The National Coalition of STD Directors is asking the government to authorize emergency access to public health funding so they can combat the crisis.
PREVENTION TREATMENT. This trio of STDs can lead to infertility, stillbirths, ectopic pregnancies, and a host of other conditions if left untreated. STDs affect individuals of all ages, but most of the new cases each year occur in 15 to 24-year-olds.
"If we're not teaching people how to keep themselves safe from sexually transmitted infections early, then we start to see these surges and increases in those rates", Rauch said.More news: Elon Musk reignites Twitter slur controversy
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A lack of sex education also is contributing to the spread of STDs, said Michael Fraser, executive director for the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials.
Diagnoses of gonorrhea rose by 67 percent overall from 333,004 in 2013 to 555,608 cases, according to preliminary data for 2017.
CDC funding for prevention efforts has hovered around $157 million for the past 18 years, Harvey said.
The trend is exacerbated by the fact that gonorrhea could soon become resistant to antibiotic treatment, the CDC said in a statement Tuesday.
A new report from the CDC says STDs are on the rise across the country. Azithromycin was added to help delay the development of resistance to ceftriaxone. The CDC is concerned that such resistance could eventually extend to ceftriaxone, which would make the disease untreatable by any current antibiotic.
Experts are anxious that azithromycin-resistant genes in some gonorrhea strains could cross over into gonorrhea that is not as susceptible to ceftriaxone.