Know The Facts First!
About the Campaign
Know The Facts First is a national public health awareness campaign designed to provide teen girls, ages 13-19, with accurate information about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and STD prevention so that they can make informed decisions about sexual activity. The campaign, developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health, in collaboration with the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) and National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), encourages girls to be informed about STDs and be empowered to protect themselves. We want teen girls to Know The Facts First before they get into any kind of sex.
A number of critical factors led to the selection of this target audience for the campaign, including:
- About 1 in 4 teens has an STD.
- By age 15, 13% of girls have had sex. By age 17, this percentage increases to 43%, and by age 19, 68% of females have engaged in sexual activity.
- Teens who have sex at younger ages are less likely to use contraception, at higher lifetime risk for STDs and HIV, and likely to have more sexual partners when compared to teens who begin sexual activity later.
- Nearly 20 million new STD infections occur each year in the United States with almost half of them occurring among young people 15-24 years of age.
- Reported cases of all three nationally notifiable STDs – chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis – have increased for the first time since 2006. Despite being a relatively small portion of the sexually active population, young people between the ages of 15 and 24 accounted for the highest rates of chlamydia and gonorrhea and almost two-thirds of all reported cases.
Teen girls will be able to Know The Facts First by visiting KnowTheFactsFirst.gov.
- Forhan SE, et al. Prevalence of sexually transmitted infections among female adolescents aged 14 to 19 in the United States. Pediatrics.2009 Dec; 124(6):1505-12.
- CDC/NCHS, National Survey of Family Growth, 2011–2013.
- CDC. Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance 2013. Atlanta: US Department of Health and Human Services; 2014.
- Satterwhite CL, et al. Sexually transmitted infections among U.S. women and men: Prevalence and incidence estimates, 2008. Sexually Transmitted Disease 2013; 40(3): pp. 187-193.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance 2014. Atlanta: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; 2015.