* Trends in Chlamydia morbidity reporting from many state and local jurisdictions are more reflective of changes in diagnostic, screening, and reporting practices than of actual trends in disease incidence. Morbidity trends are also likely to be influenced by changes in test technology as laboratories expand their use of more sensitive tests (e.g., nucleic acid amplification tests). As more jurisdictions develop Chlamydia prevention and control programs, including improved surveillance systems to monitor trends, the data should improve and become more representative of true trends in disease.
Years Available: 2003–2017
Permanent Link: http://data.sagepub.com/sagestats/6252
General Notes: *Median value gives the value for the "average" county for this metric, the 50th percentile of all counties reporting data.
Trends in rates of reported cases of chlamydia are influenced by changes in incidence of infection, as well as changes in diagnostic, screening, and reporting practices. As chlamydial infections are usually asymptomatic, the number of infections identified and reported can increase as more people are screened even when incidence is flat or decreasing. Expanded use of more sensitive diagnostics tests (e.g., nucleic acid amplification tests) can also increase the number of infections identified and reported independent of increases in incidence. Additionally, increasing use of electronic laboratory reporting has likely increased the proportion of diagnosed cases that are reported. Consequently, an increasing chlamydia case rate may reflect increases in incidence of infection, screening coverage, and use of more sensitive tests, as well as more complete reporting. Likewise, decreases in chlamydia case rates may suggest decreases in incidence of infection or screening coverage.
Display of county-level data is limited to total rate or case count, with no demographic breakdown; therefore, no data suppression is used at the county level.