Season 3 of East Los High, a popular television series that deals with the experiences of teens in a fictional inner city high school in East Los Angeles, California, just came out on Hulu. If you're anything like us, you've probably already binge-watched the entire season. This show is awesome for many reasons but it's especially awesome because the characters deal with real life issues that real teens face every day.
The show's producers also released shorter videos that focus on a specific issue that a character deals with during the season. One of the videos focuses on Gina’s visit to a health clinic to get tested for gonorrhea. Gina decided to get tested because her friend (that her ex-boyfriend cheated on her with) told her that she got gonorrhea from the ex-boyfriend. Gina was responding out of fear and shock, but it's important to know you don’t need to wait to hear news like this to get tested. In fact, getting tested for STDs is always a good idea.
In this video, the clinician asks Gina if she has any symptoms, such as vaginal bleeding or pain while urinating. Even though Gina says she doesn't have any symptoms, it was smart of Gina to get tested because many symptoms of STDs are not obvious. This means that it was still possible for Gina to test positive for gonorrhea. By going to the clinic to get tested for gonorrhea, she was also able to get tested for chlamydia, syphilis, and HIV at the same time. Despite different testing methods – a urine test for gonorrhea and chlamydia and a blood test for syphilis and HIV – Gina was able to cover all the bases and know her status with these STDs.
Gina and her clinician also had a discussion regarding her birth control options, as well as how often she should get tested. This type of conversation is typical of a clinic visit. Gina asked whether or not this information would be kept confidential, and the clinician said yes because she used Family PACT to pay for her visit. You should know that any sexual and reproductive health care visit will be confidential, even if you aren’t using Family PACT, so there shouldn't be any reason not to get tested! If you are on your parents' insurance, you can fill out a Confidential Communications Request to make sure all of your health information stays private.
So don't forget to follow Gina's example and get tested for STDs on the regular.