I hope this letter finds you well. As we transition into the holiday season, I would like to share some new resources and project updates.
DSTDP Begins New Antibiotic Resistance Project
As part of the Antibiotic Resistance Solutions Initiative, CDC recently awarded $9 million to pilot innovative solutions and explore knowledge gaps about antibiotic resistance related to the human microbiome, healthcare settings, and surface water and soil. DSTDP’s funded project focuses on point-of-care antibiotic susceptibility testing for gonorrhea. CDC and investigators will develop and evaluate new molecular assays that can determine the antibiotics to which a patient’s strain of gonorrhea is susceptible. This fast and efficient test will help guide individual patient management and can be used to identify antibiotic-resistant strains of gonorrhea using molecular techniques rather than culture. It can also be used to support outbreak investigations of resistant gonorrhea in the community.
Update to Public Health Reporting and National Notification of Syphilis
As a reminder, the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) approved the Update to Public Health Reporting and National Notification for Syphilis, which includes changes that will take effect on January 1, 2018. This new position statement for syphilis (17-ID-11) includes revisions to the surveillance case definitions for syphilis. By ensuring that cases of syphilis are reported in accordance with the revised surveillance case definitions, we can obtain more accurate surveillance for this infection and its clinical manifestations. We can also better understand disease trends and factors associated with transmission. Links to recordings of webinars explaining these revisions will be posted on CSTE and CDC websites.
STD Program Evaluation Tools & Trainings (STD PETT)
With support from DSTDP staff, the National Coalition of STD Directors, Cardea Services, Texas Health Institute, and the National Network of Public Health Institutes developed and launched STD Program Evaluation Tools and Trainings (STD PETT) a collection of six online training modules and 21 downloadable resources providing step-by-step guidance to enhance STD program evaluation capacity. STD PETT emphasizes practical, resource-friendly methods and features real-world successes from 7 different local and state STD programs across the nation. With logic model templates, data analysis tutorials, and checklists for every phase of evaluation, STD PETT aims to make evaluation an accessible core activity among STD programs of any size and scope.
National STD Curriculum Launched
STDs continue to rise in the U.S., and with them come the growing need for healthcare provider training. In response, the University of Washington STD Prevention Training Center has developed the National STD Curriculum website. The site addresses the epidemiology, pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, diagnosis, management, and prevention of STDs. The website is free, up-to-date, and seamlessly integrates the most recent CDC STD Treatment Guidelines. Features include:
- Seven Self-Study Modules
- Twelve Question Bank topics with 100+ interactive board-review style questions
- Modular learning in any order with an individual progress tracker
- Group registration and tracking for staff, students, and healthcare organizations
- Free continuing education credits (CME and CNE)
New STD Prevention Success Story
The latest addition to our collection of STD Prevention Success Stories is Battling Antibiotic-Resistant Gonorrhea: A Timeline of Coordinated Teamwork. I encourage you to take a moment to read about the work of our colleagues at the Hawaii Department of Health’s STD clinic. They identified a cluster of seven patients with gonorrhea whose samples did not respond in the laboratory to either antibiotic in CDC’s recommended dual therapy as well as expected. Through quick action by the Hawaii team’s healthcare providers, laboratorians, and DIS, it was confirmed that all seven patients were successfully treated with the CDC recommended dual therapy, despite the lab findings.
2018 STD Prevention Conference – Conference Theme and Call for Abstracts
The 2018 STD Prevention Conference is August 27-30, 2018 in Washington, DC. This year’s conference theme is Intersecting Epidemics, Integrated Solutions. We believe this theme captures key elements of today’s STD prevention environment, while also offering the perfect umbrella with which to share your work in the areas of STD prevention research, program, policy, diagnosis, and treatment. I would like to remind you that the Call for Abstracts is currently open. Please submit your abstracts electronically no later than Friday, February 16, 2018, 11:59pm PST. You can find detailed information on writing and submitting an abstract on the Conference Call for Abstracts webpage.
The American Journal of Public Health Theme Issue – Call for Papers
The American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) and CDC’s National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention (NCHHSTP) will be publishing a theme issue on applying methods, metrics, and indicators for measuring disparities in health outcomes and risk behaviors for the prevention and treatment of HIV, STDs, viral hepatitis, and TB in the United States. This is a special opportunity to submit an article about one of NCHHSTP’s priority focus areas. Please see AJPH’s Call for Papersfor additional information.
As always, thank you for your commitment to STD prevention.
Gail Bolan, MD
Director, Division of STD PreventionNational Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB PreventionCenters for Disease Control and Prevention