Sexual and reproductive health

Global estimates shed light on toll of sexually transmitted infections

World Bank/Flore de Préneuf
Young people need information on safe sex practices to prevent STIs including HIV.

08 December 2015: Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) have a profound impact on sexual and reproductive health worldwide, and continue to cause a major burden of disease. Global estimates, published in the journal PLOS ONE today, show that an estimated 357 million new infections occur every year with one of 4 STIs: chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis and trichomoniasis.

Substantial number of genital herpes infections caused by herpes simplex virus type 1

28th October 2015: Approximately two-thirds of the population under age 50 are infected with herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), which commonly causes orolabial herpes (‘cold sores’) and which can also cause genital herpes. In the first WHO global and regional estimates of the burden of HSV-1 infection ever published, the authors state that around 3.7 billion people under age 50 are infected with the virus.

WHO validates elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV and syphilis in Cuba

Cuba. Pregnant women in the waiting room of an antenatal clinic.
PAHO/WHO

30 June 2015 - Washington DC-Geneva - Cuba today became the first country in the world to receive validation from the World Health Organization that it has eliminated mother to child transmission of HIV and syphilis. “Eliminating transmission of a virus is one of the greatest public health achievements possible. This is a major victory in our long fight against HIV and sexually transmitted infections, and an important step towards having an AIDS-free generation” said Dr Margaret Chan, WHO Director-General.

WHO developing three 2016-2021 Global Health Sector Strategies for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

Close up of woman's hand holding a condom.
UNAIDS/P. Virot

As the world looks to 2030, and prepares to meet the challenges of an ambitious set of Sustainable Development Goals, WHO is developing three global health sector strategies to cover: HIV/AIDS - viral hepatitis - sexually transmitted infections (STIs). The strategies will cover 2016-2021 and will be finalized for consideration by the 69th World Health Assembly in 2016.

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)