Implementing Universal Screening for Gonorrhea and Chlamydia in Rural Young Adults: A Quality Improvement Project

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Sexson, Lauren
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Gonorrhea , Chlamydia , Universal , Screening
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Purpose: 1. To educate on universal screening recommendations 2. Make aware the options for testing 3. Create awareness of patients understanding of STIs Background: Due to the high prevalence of gonorrhea and chlamydia, the CDC recommends yearly screening for both in sexually active females under the age of 25, and those 25 and older who meet certain criteria. Increasing screening can potentially catch asymptomatic infections preventing further spread and health complications. Sample/Setting: Any adult M or F ages 19-39 in the clinic for a wellness exam. The setting was two rural family medicine clinics that fell under a local private healthcare system. Methods: Education was provided to each clinic location prior to the start. Handouts were provided for reference. A handout was provided to patients who participated on gonorrhea and chlamydia, how testing works, treatments, and the risks associated with the conditions as well as preventative measures. A urine sample was then collected and sent for G/C testing. The results were then compared to the same period of time of the previous year. Results: 15 eligible patients met criteria to be screened for the October – December 2022 date range. A single G/C test was resulted – it was negative. There was an additional G/C test done however the sample was incorrectly collected by staff and resulted as invalid. The patient never returned to the clinic for recollection. In comparison to the 2021 date range, there were 31 eligible patients and seven total G/C screening tests done. All negative. Conclusion: The small sample makes it hard to determine a need for universal screening. Both STIs continue to spread due to poor screening measures and asymptomatic presentation in the majority of individuals affected. Literature shows there are multiple standards of testing and also multiple types of testing available for both. Regardless, one of the most important aspects of reducing the incidence is prevention through proper patient education.
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