Community mobilization guide : a community-based effort to eliminate syphilis in the United States
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Community mobilization guide : a community-based effort to eliminate syphilis in the United States

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      Syphilis rates in the United States decreased during the 1990s and reached their lowest ever in 2000. However, these rates have begun rising again, increasing slightly in 2001 and more substantially in 2002. Between 2001 and 2002, the overall syphilis rate increased 12.4 percent. In 2003, the rate of primary and secondary (P&S) syphilis in the United States was 4.2% higher than the rate in 2002.

      The Syphilis Elimination Effort (SEE) is a national initiative bringing together health care providers, community leadership, policy and opinion makers, and health departments to drive down syphilis rates in the United States. In October 1999, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in collaboration with federal, state, and local partners, launched a national plan to eliminate syphilis. In the plan, CDC identified key strategies needed for elimination. They are:

      • Increase detection and monitoring of syphilis cases.

      • Strengthen community involvement and partnerships to implement locally relevant syphilis elimination action plans.

      • Respond rapidly to outbreaks to interrupt transmission of the disease.

      • Enhance health promotion to promote preventive sexual and health care behaviors to those at risk.

      • Expand clinical and laboratory services to promote access to and use of high-quality care for people infected with or exposed to syphilis.

      To help move the National Syphilis Elimination Plan forward, CDC and its partners published the Syphilis Elimination Communication Plan in August 2000. This document provides an outline of the national plan’s communication goals, objectives, target audiences, strategies, and tactics. The SEE Community Mobilization Guide and Kit incorporates many of the recommendations in the Syphilis Elimination Communication Plan. For more information on “The National Plan to Eliminate Syphilis from the United States” and the “Syphilis Elimination Communication Plan,” go to the Web site:

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