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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) -- Health officials are encouraging Illinois residents who are sexually active to talk with a health care professional and get tested for sexually transmitted diseases.
It's National STD Awareness Month. The Illinois Department of Public Health is distributing "Get Yourself Talking, Get Yourself Tested" toolkits to STD clinics and school-based health centers.
For 2008, Illinois ranked eighth in the nation for the rate of gonorrhea cases and ninth for the rate of chlamydia cases.
But people can reduce their risk through abstinence or reducing their number of sex partners. Officials also recommend the consistent and correct use of condoms and regular screening for STDs.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)