The most commonly reported STDs in New Braunfels, TX, are chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis. Data from the Comal County website show similar incidences of all three between 2017 and 2018, however, significant jumps in reported cases for 2019.
Chlamydia is Texas’s most prevalent STD in 2018, with the highest recorded number of cases — 145,874. This holds true for New Braunfels as well. The city reported 201 chlamydia diagnoses in 2018. Chlamydia is most often reported among females, and in Texas, the rates per 100,000 persons of 317.0 in males and 692.8 in females support this trend. However, over the past eight years, the rate of affected males has slowly increased while the rate for females has declined. Overwhelmingly, the most affected age group is young adults 15-24, who make up over 60% of the state’s 145,874 cases.
Gonorrhea cases have risen slowly over the past eight years in Texas, beginning with a rate of 119.5 per 100,000 persons in 2011 and ending with a rate of 163.6 in 2018. New Braunfels’s history of gonorrhea in the city shows a gradual rise from 2017 to 2018 (from 41 to 46 affected people), but a significant jump in 2019’s caseload of 69 residents. Gonorrhea cases in Texas were more prevalent in those aged 15-24, and the number of documented instances were somewhat evenly split between men and women, with 57% men and 43% women.
Across Texas and in New Braunfels, primary and secondary syphilis cases are increasing, with New Braunfels reporting 11 infected individuals in the city in 2019 compared to 4 in 2018. Texas rates are up as well. Males are diagnosed with syphilis at a much greater rate, and this trend has continued over the past seven years. The rate for males in 2018 was 14.8 per 100,000, while females was merely 2.9. Syphilis appears in a slightly older age group (adults 25-34) than chlamydia and gonorrhea (15-24). One of the most worrying aspects of syphilis is the dramatic rise of congenital syphilis, which has grown 123.5%. There were only 71 cases of congenital syphilis in Texas in 2016 but 367 in 2018. The national rate for congenital syphilis was 33.1 per 100,000 live births, while in Texas, the rate is 91.0 per 100,000 births.
Many people living with STDs are completely unaware of it. At the onset, most STDs have little to no symptoms, and sometimes the symptoms go away on their own. Unfortunately, the infectious organism remains, creating more problems in the body. Left untreated, STDs can cause serious health concerns in men and women. However, with prompt treatment, many STDs are completely curable, and others respond well to medication management. Find out for sure if you’re infected by getting tested at one of these free or low-cost clinics near New Braunfels.
The county’s health department manages a clinic in downtown New Braunfels which offers STD prevention education and limited lab capabilities, including pregnancy tests and hepatitis B and C screening. Vaccines for hepatitis A and B and HPV are also available. Clinic hours vary, so it’s best to call before visiting, but walk-ins are accepted. Fees are listed on the Health Department website.
1297 Church Hill Drive, Suite 102
New Braunfels, Texas 78130
Planned Parenthood has an office just west of New Braunfels on the northeast outskirts of San Antonio, TX. The agency offers in-person and telehealth STD consults. Screening options include chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and HIV, and the center gives vaccines for hepatitis and HPV as well. You can pay with insurance, Medicare, Texas Medicaid, or apply for financial assistance. No insurance is necessary, and all are welcome. The Northeast center is open Monday through Saturday during the day, and walk-ins are accepted. Languages spoken include Spanish and English, and other options are available with advance notice.
11514 Perrin Beitel Road
San Antonio, TX 78217
The Kind Clinic provides free sexual health services to anyone, regardless of gender, race, or sexual orientation. The San Antonio location is just 30 miles southwest of New Braunfels. The clinic offers screening for gonorrhea, syphilis, chlamydia, and hepatitis A and B. Results are returned to the patient via an online portal. If positive, a follow-up appointment is scheduled. The Kind Clinic also provides HIV testing and supportive care for individuals diagnosed with HIV. Drop-in testing hours are Monday through Friday, daily, with breaks for lunch. Patients can also speak with an STD counselor via virtual visits.
730 Isom Road
San Antonio, TX 78216
Situated near downtown San Antonio, about 40 miles from New Braunfels, the AIDS Foundation provides HIV and syphilis screening at their Grayson Street location. The organization also sponsors a mobile HIV testing unit that roams the city, or clients can order a free HIV test to perform at home. Testing services are available daily, Monday through Saturday, and all screenings are free. English- and Spanish-speaking staff are on hand for STD counseling, and the center gives out free condoms at all testing sites.
818 East Grayson Street
San Antonio, TX 78208
New Braunfels residents who live northeast of the city may prefer to visit the Center for Health Empowerment, which lies in southern Austin, TX. This nonprofit organization provides STD screenings for free or at low costs. Chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, hepatitis C, and HIV are a few of the many infectious organisms the center tests for. Appointments can be scheduled over the phone, online, or by walking in. The South Austin office is open Tuesday and Friday mornings, and Wednesday afternoons and evenings.
4534 West Gate Boulevard, Suite 106
Austin, TX 78702