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More than one million new cases of sexually transmitted infections every day

These STIs have a profound impact on the health of adults and children worldwide.

If untreated, they can lead to serious and chronic health effects that include neurological and cardiovascular disease, infertility, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirths, and increased risk of HIV. They are also associated with significant levels of stigma and domestic violence.

In this WHO-led study LSHTM quantified the prevalence of curable STIs among pregnant women in low and middle-income countries, data that were combined with others by the WHO to produce these new global estimates. Dr Matthew Chico, a co-author of the study, commented on the findings:

“These global estimates of four curable STIs must be a catalyst for change. One million new infections worldwide every day - frankly, the urgency for action could not be clearer.

“These STIs are preventable and treatable. However, the global threat of antibiotic resistance looms large, highlighted by the almost unthinkable: a world without a cure for gonorrhoea in the not too distant future.

“Alongside promoting sexual health education and effective condom use, efforts to improve STI surveillance, and develop new treatments and diagnostics, must be a top public health priority.”