Riverside County, Calif., Board of Supervisors Approves Health Dept. Funding for Programs To Combat Syphilis Epidemic
The Riverside County, Calif., Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a measure that would allocate $103,000 from the state Department of Health Services for syphilis outreach and education to help fight the county's burgeoning epidemic, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 1/7). In the county, 75 new syphilis cases were reported in the first nine months of 2003, compared with 17 new cases during the same period in 2001. In addition, the total number of reported early syphilis cases is expected to reach 92 for all of 2003, Dr. Gary Feldman, Riverside County health director, said, according to the Press-Enterprise. He added, "That really represents an epidemic" (Coronado, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 1/6). Of the $103,00 in funding, approximately $75,000 would go to the Desert AIDS Project for community outreach and education programs, including establishing a syphilis elimination task force, the Press-Enterprise reports (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 1/7). The task force will focus on a community-wide media campaign and preventive outreach measures to encourage condom use (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 1/6). The remaining $28,000 would go to laboratory equipment, supplies and testing, according to the Press-Enterprise (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 1/7).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.