Youth on Fire
Bowdoin Street Health Center
Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine
Boston STD Clinic
Brookside Community Health Center
East Cambridge Health Center
Windsor Street Care Center
Inman Square Care Center
Cambridge Primary Care Center
Broadway Care Center
Union Square Family Health
Everett Care Center
Somerville Hospital Primary Care Center
Everett Teen Health Center
Cambridge Family Health North
Malden Family Medicine Center
Revere Care Center
Martha Eliot Health Center
20 Maverick Square
Sidney Borum Jr Health Center
Geiger Gibson Community Health Center
Neponset Health Center
HIV and Street Outreach Programs
Market Square Family Health Services at Western Ave
North Quincy Health Center
Snug Harbor Health Center
Infectious Disease Outpatient Practice
Division of Infectious Diseases
Chelsea Healthcare Center
Greater Boston Health Center
Boston, MA, along with the rest of Suffolk County is seeing ever increasing incidences of STDs, including the three most common, chlamydia, syphilis, and gonorrhea.
Suffolk County has bucked a statewide trend by decreasing chlamydia rates since the mid-2000s. The county saw a record high of 6,212 reported cases, representing 843.3 cases per 100,000 residents in 2011. By 2015, however, these figures had dropped to 259.6 cases with slight increases over the next two years, hitting 326.7 cases in 2017. While chlamydia rates in the Boston area tend to be higher than the rest of the state, the statewide rate has risen from 153.8 cases per 100,000 people in 2000 to 427.3 cases in 2017, with only a slight dip in 2014. Suffolk County had the sixth-highest rates of chlamydia in the state.
Massachusetts saw a dip in gonorrhea cases through the early 2000s, with a low of 30 cases per 100,000 residents in 2009. This rate climbed steadily to 56.5 cases per 100,000 in 2015, before exploding to 73.0 cases per 100,000 in 2016, and then 112.8 cases per 100,000 in 2017. Suffolk County broke with statewide trends for gonorrhea, falling from a high of 1,404 cases in 2002 to 965 cases in 2017. The county aligned with the state’s dip in cases between 2004 and 2011, but then saw a spike between 2012 and 2014, only to drop again thereafter, and Suffolk County has the third-highest rate of gonorrhea in the state.
As with chlamydia, the city experienced a slight drop in syphilis rates in 2014. The disease has otherwise increased steadily from just 141 confirmed cases in 2000 to 1091 cases in 2017. This marks a statewide increase from about one case to 7.8 cases per 100,000 residents during the 17-year period. Suffolk County and the Boston area has stayed consistently above the state’s infection rate for syphilis, increasing from a rate of 3.9 cases per 100,000 in 2000 to 19 cases per 100,000 in 2017. Suffolk did, however, see a drop in syphilis cases from 86 to 78 reported cases between 2014 and 2016, before hitting an all-time high of 152 cases in 2017. These are the highest syphilis infection rates in the state.
Some STDs can have lifelong consequences, and the only way to ensure a clean bill of health is through regular testing. Getting an STD test is important even for low-risk individuals because many STDs can have symptoms that are similar to less dangerous illnesses, and some may not have any symptoms at all. If left untreated, STDs can prove debilitating or even deadly. With today’s widely available, inexpensive, and effective testing, it’s easy to stay informed and responsible.
Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) remain one of the most critical public health challenges facing the United States, with approximately 26 million new STD infections occurring every year. Nearly half of these new infections affect young people ages 15 to 24.
Community-based organizations are a vital first line of defense in the fight against STDs and HIV/AIDS in particular. They generate awareness and foster social change while providing access to testing and treatment.
You may not be aware of all the STD resources available in Boston that can help prevent the spread of STDs. Get connected with these community organizations that are leading the fight against STDs and HIV/AIDS with resources and support:
The Greater Boston Health Center is operated by Planned Parenthood and offers a range of services, including LGBTQ health needs, birth control, men’s health services, and STD resources. Treatment, testing, and vaccines for the most common STDs are available, as are 30-minute rapid exams using mouth swabs. A range of STD prevention options is also available, including male and female condoms, HPV vaccines, dental dams, and educational services.
1055 Commonwealth Ave.
Boston, MA 02215
Fenway Health is a federally-funded health center with a special focus on serving the LGBTQIA+ community. Fenway’s public health HIV and STD testing services are geared towards men who have sex with men, those identifying as transgender, and their partners. For others who require HIV testing, Fenway can schedule appointments with primary care providers and recommend other same-day and walk-in options. This facility provides care regardless of income, family size, credit, or a visitor’s ability to pay and offers state-of-the-art services, such as fourth-generation HIV serum testing. Testing and treatment for symptomatic bacterial STDs and herpes are also available, and those with chronic conditions may be assigned a registered nurse as a case manager for long-term treatment.
1340 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02215
Multiple Boston Locations
The Massachusetts General Hospital Sexual Health Clinic has provided testing and treatment for STDs in the Boston area for over 60 years. This is a free clinic and no insurance is required. A wide range of testing is available, including chlamydia, scabies, Human papillomavirus, vaginitis, genital warts, syphilis, molluscum, gonorrhea, and genital herpes infections (HSV). HIV screening and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV are also available. Walk-in visitors are welcomed Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, with appointments available on Mondays. Patients are welcome to take complimentary STD prevention and safe sex practices literature home with them from any visit.
55 Fruit St.
Cox Building, 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02114
Multiple Boston Locations
This clinic offers dedicated appointments for HPV immunizations on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m., while blood tests for syphilis, hepatitis C, HIV, and herpes are available Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The HIV testing offered at this clinic scans for both HIV 1 and 2 antibodies. and a full range of counseling is available before and after testing. These HIV tests can be taken anonymously, meaning that the results will not be added to any medical records. Chlamydia and gonorrhea testing is performed using urine samples, which usually provide accurate results within one to two weeks after exposure.
100 William T. Morrissey Blvd.
Quinn Admin Bldg, 2nd floor
Boston, MA 02125
Boston HAPPENS is a donation-supported free clinic dedicated to serving adolescents and adults under age 25 who have HIV or are at risk for STDs. Short for HIV Adolescent Provider and Peer Education Network for Services, this facility offers testing for gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis, as well as a full range of HIV testing and counseling services. Post-exposure prophylaxis (nPEP) and follow-up treatments are available to sexual assault victims, and an interdisciplinary team is available for educational and preventative training. At-risk youths can also access traditional medical services, such as primary care and immunizations.
401 Park Dr., Suite 602
Boston, MA 02215