CDC Outlines Recommendations for Providing Quality STD Clinical Services

STD QCS Can Provide Roadmap for Optimizing STD Care

January 15, 2020

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released Recommendations for Providing Quality Sexually Transmitted Diseases Clinical Services, 2020 (or STD QCS). This report provides CDC recommendations to U.S. healthcare providers regarding quality clinical services for STDs for primary care and STD specialty care settings. STD QCS is designed to complement CDC’s 2015 STD Treatment Guidelines. While STD Treatment Guidelines is a comprehensive, evidence-based reference for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of STDs, the new STD QCS can help guide clinical operations. For example, where the Treatment Guidelines recommend which drug regimen to use to treat a patient, QCS suggests which drug regimens could or should be kept in stock.

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STD QCS is structured to provide recommendations based on clinical setting type – primary care or STD specialty care. While STD clinics remain a critical part of our healthcare infrastructure and public health STD prevention and control strategies, more and more Americans get tested and treated in other settings, including primary care, HIV care and family planning clinics. QCS was designed with this shift in mind and the reality that provision of service varies by setting type.

STD QCS recommendations are outlined in eight key sections: Sexual history and physical examination, prevention, screening, partner services, evaluation of STD-related conditions, laboratory, treatment, and referral to a specialist for complex STD or STD-related conditions.

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These recommendations allow healthcare providers to build, maintain, or enhance the delivery of STD services in their primary care and STD specialty care settings. STD QCS is not intended to develop new guidance for when or how to provide the services or to mandate or regulate services. Read more about CDC’s recommendations by referencing the 2020 report.

More Resources
CDC: STD QCS
AAPA CME: Addressing the Burden of HPV Disease
CDC Webinar: Recommendations for Providing Quality STD Clinical Services