Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Wednesday, 7 Mar 2001

Vol. 532 No. 2

Written Answers. - Syphilis Epidemic.

Bernard Allen


140 Mr. Allen asked the Minister for Health and Children the steps which are being taken to deal with the syphilis epidemic in Dublin, as reported in a publication (details supplied) on 2 March 2001. [7026/01]

The Eastern Regional Health Authority (ERHA) has informed me that it has investigated this matter and there is currently an outbreak of syphilis among homosexual and bisexual men in Dublin. An outbreak control team has been established, comprising representatives of the Public Health Department of the ERHA, the sexually transmitted infection (STI) service in St. James's Hospital and the National Disease Surveillance Centre. The outbreak control team is assisted by the Gay Men's Health Project and the Gay HIV Strategies Group.

Those who believe they may be at risk have been advised to attend their local STI Clinic. Contact tracing is being carried out through the STI clinics. Extra clinics have been put in place in St. James's STI Service to deal with cases of syphilis. A special enhanced surveillance system for this disease, for the duration of the outbreak, is being co-ordinated by the National Disease Surveillance Centre. A case control study is being carried out by the outbreak control team to gather further information on risk factors associated with the spread of the disease.

Information about the outbreak has been dis seminated to relevant health professionals nationally. Awareness in the gay community is being promoted by dissemination of information in the form of posters and leaflets through gay community groups.