Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sexual Disease Medicare Coverage Considered

Maybe it’s longer lives; maybe it’s Viagra. Either way, STDs are soaring among seniors—and climbing faster among older adults than within the population as a whole.

. . . or, maybe it's the general rise in sexual immorality?

-- From "STDs Soar Among Seniors" by Matt Cantor, Newser Staff 4/19/11

Reportings of syphilis and chlamydia among those 55 and older jumped 43% between 2005 and 2009, the Orlando Sentinel finds in a study of CDC data. Syphilis climbed faster than the national average among those 55 to 64: Older adults saw a 70% rise in reported cases, 10 percentage points higher than the average for all age groups.

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From "Seniors' sex lives are up — and so are STD cases" by Marni Jameson, Orlando Sentinel 4/18/11

As a result of the national trend among seniors, Medicare is considering providing coverage for STD screenings for seniors. Last month, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid office announced that it was looking into adding STD exams to the national health-insurance program, which already pays for HIV screenings. Medicare also is weighing the benefits of paying for behavioral counseling for sexually active seniors.

The factors driving the rise of STDs in the older set include Americans living longer, healthier lives and a new class of medications, which include Viagra, making more sex possible. Many older adults didn't get the safe-sex messages that younger generations received, say experts, so their condom use is lower. In addition, more seniors are living in group retirement communities where there's more socializing.

Besides Viagra, other medications such as hormone replacements are helping seniors remain sexually active longer. Progesterone and estrogen creams help make sex more comfortable for women, while testosterone-replacement drugs boost libido in men and women.

Finally, a more open sexual attitude has contributed to the rising infection rate.


To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.