The Impact of Discontinuation of Male STD Screening Services at a Large Urban County Jail: Chicago, 20022004

Broad, Jennifer MPH*; Cox, Tamara MPA*; Rodriguez, Sergio MD†; Mansour, Mohamed MD, PhD†; Mennella, Concetta MD†; Murphy-Swallow, Dorothy MS, RN†; Raba, John M. MD†; Wong, William MD*

doi: 10.1097/OLQ.0b013e318156159a

Background: Before April 2003, all male detainees were offered chlamydia (CT) and gonorrhea (GC) screening tests, after which services were limited to symptom-based testing. In 2003, male screening was discontinued at a large urban county jail.

Objective: To evaluate the impact of discontinuing universal male sexually transmitted disease screening in a large county jail.

Methods: We compared the number of male CT/GC cases during the periods of universal screening (April 2002 to March 2003) with symptom-based testing (April 2003 to March 2004).

Results: The number of reported CT/GC cases among male detainees declined by −91.7% (3329–277) and −90.5% (1133–108), respectively after universal screening was discontinued. Citywide, CT/GC cases among males and females declined by −9.3% (24,885–22,563) and −12.9% (13,249–11,541), respectively.

Conclusions: Discontinuation of universal male CT/GC screening services at a large county jail represents a missed opportunity to screen a high-risk population and was associated with substantial declines in reported morbidity.

Discontinuation of the jail screening program resulted in substantial reductions in case finding at a large urban county jail and in citywide reported morbidity for male chlamydia and gonorrhea.

From the *Chicago Department of Public Health, STD/HIV Prevention and Care Program, Chicago, Illinois; and †Cermak Health Services of Cook County, Cook County Bureau of Health Services, Chicago, Illinois

Correspondence: Jennifer Broad, MPH, Chicago Department of Public Health, STD/HIV/AIDS Division, 2045 W. Washington Blvd., Chicago, IL 60601. E-mail:

Received for publication May 7, 2007, and accepted July 20, 2007.

© Copyright 2009 American Sexually Transmitted Diseases Association