Sexual Health news - Sex Education/Resources

New smartphone app lets users share STD-free statuses

Teenagers and young adults are waist-deep in the world of technology these days, which explains why some healthcare professionals are teaming up with software developers to create smartphone apps that aim to brush these youngsters up on their sexual health and reduce rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

One new app in particular, MedXCom, developed by New Jersey MedXSafe developer Michael Nusbaum, M.D., gives people a way to exchange contact information and their STD-free statuses, according to ABC News.

The app features "safe bumping," which allows users to bump phones with potential partners to exchange a contact card and a doctor-verified STD-free status. After a negative status has been verified by STD testing, MedXCom users can ask their doctors to confirm their clean statuses on the app.

However, if someone is tested for STDs and the results come back positive, his or her status will not be shared on the app and no record will be shown to protect the user's privacy. In this instance, the app user would be encouraged to get treatment and get tested again.

While the app can't protect those who download it from unwanted pregnancies or STDs, it's a way to promote safer sex and bring STDs into awareness.

In 2011, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that almost half of American high school students reported having sexual intercourse at some point in their lives. Of those students, 33 percent reported having sex in the previous three months, and 39 percent did not use a condom the last time they had sex.

Since the CDC states that nearly half of the 19 million new STD cases that occur each year present themselves in individuals between the ages of 15 and 24, it's obvious that more education about sexual health is necessary, whether it's in the form of smartphone apps like MedXCom or health classes.