Did you know it's STI (Sexually Transmitted Infection) Awareness Week? It runs April 14 through April 20 and is an opportunity to raise awareness about STIs and encourage people to get tested.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost 20 million new infections occur every year in the U.S. However, many people who have an STI do not know that they have been infected.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) reports that during 2023, about 52,000 people in Michigan were diagnosed with one or more reportable STIs.

Chlamydia and gonorrhea are the most common STIs in Michigan. In addition, Syphilis continues to increase at an alarming rate throughout the state. According to MDHHS, since 2014, rates of symptomatic/infectious syphilis have doubled in Michigan.

In observance of STI Awareness Week, the Kent County Health Department is offering free walk-in testing for STIs this Saturday, April 20. The event is 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. at the health department's main clinic located at 700 Fuller SE in Grand Rapids.

At the clinic you can get tested for:

  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Syphilis
  • Hepatitis C
  • HIV
  • Trichomoniasis

Services are available for anyone 13 years of age or older. Minors do not need parental or guardian consent for counseling, testing, or treatment. They say appointments will usually take around 45 minutes.

The Kent County Health Department advises that everyone who is sexually active should get tested at least yearly or more based on their risk.

Find more information on STI/ STD testing in Michigan here.

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