The HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexually Transmissible Infections in Australia Annual Surveillance Report analyses data on sexually transmissible infections (STIs), including chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis, human papillomavirus (HPV) and donovanosis. Simple treatments are available for most of these sexually transmissible infections. However, if left untreated, chlamydia and gonorrhoea can cause pelvic inflammatory disease in females and infertility in both males and females, while untreated syphilis can cause serious long-term conditions including heart failure, dementia, blindness and brain damage.
In 2017, there were an estimated 255,228 new chlamydia infections in people aged 15–29 years. Both testing and diagnoses of chlamydia have increased in the past five years. However, almost three quarters of infections in young people remain undiagnosed and untreated.
There were 28,364 diagnoses of gonorrhoea and 4,398 diagnoses of infectious syphilis in 2017, with the vast majority of diagnoses for both infections in males. Gonorrhoea and infectious syphilis in Australia are diagnosed primarily in men who have sex with men in urban settings, and in young heterosexual Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in remote areas, although the number of new diagnoses of gonorrhoea among women in urban settings has also been increasing steadily.
Among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, chlamydia and gonorrhoea rates were three and seven times higher than in the non-Indigenous population and the gaps were greater in regional and remote areas.
There has been a marked reduction in diagnoses of genital warts in younger age groups, due to the introduction of a human papillomavirus vaccination program in 2007.
You can explore the STIs data from Australia in the interactive graphs below.
Scroll down to read the interpretation of the data and to download the full version of the report.