TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX)-Southern Idaho health officials say people should include condoms along with the flowers and chocolates this Valentines Day as they kick off National Condom Week.

Stanton Healthcare and South Central Public Health District says Americans spend nearly $20 billion on the candy, cards, flowers, and gifts for Valentine's Day, but couples should add condoms to that list. SCPHD says Idaho and the nation continue to see a steady increase in sexually transmitted diseases, STDs.

Gonorrhea has seen the most growth in the southern Idaho service area for SCPHD that includes Twin Falls, Camas, Jerome, Minidoka, Lincoln, Cassia, Gooding and Blaine Counties. Officials say gonorrhea had a 203 percent increase in the first half of 2018 compared to the same time period in south-central Idaho.

Abstinence is the only 100 percent effective method to avoid unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease (STDs),” said Nicki Kroese, Executive Director of Stanton Healthcare in a prepared statement. “But if you are going to have sex, condoms may reduce your risk.

Condoms are also available for free through SCPHD at their offices and free STD testing is available from Stanton to low income people that includes treatment.


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