Chlamydia test for all under-30s

Anybody younger than 30, regardless of gender, should be screened for chlamydia each year, according to epidemiologist Professor Jane Hocking, from the School of Population and Global Health at the University of Melbourne, but currently only 12—13% are tested regularly.

About 70—80% of men and women who have chlamydia are asymptomatic, she said.

As part of the Australian Chlamydia Control Effectiveness Pilot (ACCEPt) project, researchers conducted a baseline prevalence test, finding that about 5% of the 4000 participants had the infection.

“But when we looked at why they were attending the GP’s clinic, 75% were attending for non-sexual health-related reasons,” Professor Hocking said.

“So if the doctors had only screened on the basis of people presenting for symptoms or screened because the woman was coming in for the Pill, they would have missed three-quarters of infections.”