Epidemiology: HIV, Syphilis, Gonorrhea in Miami-Dade


One of the central concerns of the U.S. healthcare sector is the gradual improvement of the health of the nation and the creation of conditions beneficial for peoples happy living. For this reason, much effort is devoted to the investigation of the factors affecting various communities across the state and deteriorating the health status. At the same time, there are incentives aimed at the provision of the needed help to regions that demand specific interventions to reduce the risk of particular diseases emergence and improve the quality of peoples lives. Healthy People 2020 is one of these campaigns focused on the elimination of barriers to health in every state by assessing existing health issues and suggesting ways to improve them.

Healthy People 2020

The wide scope of Healthy People 2020 is evidenced by the fact that its central objectives include all problems that are considered the most topical for the modern healthcare sector and affect all states. That is why its assumptions can be applied to the analysis of the existing determinants of health to understand key aspects and outline the course of action for better results. For example, the current epidemiological situation in Miami, Florida is complicated as the region is affected by communicable diseases that pose a significant threat to people living there and the quality of their lives. Among these illnesses, three should be given specific attention because of their significance. These are HIV, Syphilis, and Gonorrhea.

Three Communicable Diseases


In accordance with the latest epidemiological data South Florida and Miami remain one of the most problematic states regarding the spread of HIV. The region has a new HIV rate that is four times higher than the national average (CDC, 2018). There are 54 new diagnoses of HIV for every 100,000 people (CDC, 2018). It means that the region holds the highest HIV rate in the country and specialists admit the necessity of effective measures to stop the epidemics and improve the situation (Joseph et al., 2014). Under these conditions, prevention along with the implementation of new ways of treatment acquire the top priority for the state as the only way to reduce the number of new cases and improve the quality of patients’ lives.


As for syphilis, the situation is also complex. Miami traditionally holds the highest ranks regarding the emergence of new cases of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and syphilis is one of them. In accordance with the surveillance reports, in Miami, the rate of primary and secondary syphilis is about 10.5 per every 100,000 (CDC, 2018). It means that the region is the 6th among the 50 states regarding the scale of the problem and its spread (Sheehan, Trepka, Fennie, & Maddox, 2015).

There is also congenital syphilis and its incidence increases. In 2017, 93 cases or about 41,3 for every 100,000 births were reported (CDC, 2018). Unfortunately, it remains the highest in the USA. The problem is identified by various health facilities that outline the growing number of patients with this health issue and admit the need for intervention to improve the situation.


Finally, gonorrhea remains another significant health concern for Miami, Florida. The problem is complicated by the fact that it can be untreated for a long period of time causing the development of pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, and plain (Castro & Alcaide, 2016). Moreover, it serves as one of the risk factors for the spread of HIV, which means that problems are interconnected, and there is the need for the intervention aimed at the elimination of the central cause for their emergence (Castro & Alcaide, 2016). At the moment, Florida has a comparatively high rate of gonorrheal infections. There are 123,3 cases per 100,000 persons every year (CDC, 2018). However, the identification of relevant statistics might be complicated by the fact that many cases remain untreated because patients do not address health facilities.


Statistical data provided above evidence that there is a need for immediate action to improve the situation in Miami. The central objective of the intervention and its goals should be aligned with Healthy People 2020 that considers HIV and STD critical health concerns. In accordance with this program, the primary aim of the healthcare sector is to reduce the proportion of individuals with STD and the number of new HIV infections. It can be achieved due to the focus on prevention and promotion of healthy sexual behaviors among risk groups (Healthy People 2020, n.d.). Additionally, the access to health services needed for HIV patients should also be improved to ensure the in-time provision of the demanded care.


Altogether, HIV, syphilis, and gonorrhea are the three communicable diseases that impact Miami and pose a significant threat to the health of people living there. For this reason, there is the need for an efficient intervention to improve the situation and reduce the number of new cases. Healthy People 2020 also recognizes this problem and outlines the necessity to promote healthy sexual behaviors in risk populations and prevent deaths from HIV by introducing timely and efficient assistance and intervention. Only under these conditions, the problem can be solved, and a reduction in the number of new patients will be observed.


Castro, J., & Alcaide, M. (2016). High rates of sexually transmitted infections in HIV-infected patients attending an STI clinic. South Medical Journal, 109(1), 1-4. Web.

CDC. (2018). Sexually transmitted disease surveillance 2017. Web.

Healthy People 2020. (n.d.). 2020 topics and objectives. Web.

Joseph, H., Belcher, L., ODonnell, L., Fernandez, M., Spikes, P., & Flores, S. (2014). HIV testing among sexually active Hispanic/Latino MSM in Miami-Dade County and New York City: Opportunities for increasing acceptance and frequency of testing. Health Promotion Practice, 15(6), 867-880. Web.

Sheehan, D., Trepka, M., Fennie, K., & Maddox, L. (2015). Rate of new HIV diagnoses among Latinos living in Florida: Disparities by country/region of birth. AIDS Care, 27(4), 507-511. Web.