January 21, 2009

Staying Safe in the City

With 19 million new infections occurring each year, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) continue to be a major public health concern in the United States. A new video developed by EDC and partner organizations has resulted in a 10 percent reduction in new STD infections among clinic patients who viewed it. The video targets patients visiting STD clinics.

The Safe in the City video features a variety of characters modeling positive behaviors, such as talking with a partner about condom use. Animated segments explain different condom types and demonstrate correct usage. Research on the video’s effectiveness compares clinic patients who watched the video with patients who had not.

“The enthusiastic response among STD clinics and health departments to Safe in the City has been really encouraging,” says EDC’s Athi Myint-U. “As a stand-alone DVD designed to be played in clinic waiting rooms, it requires little staff time and is highly replicable.”

EDC helped develop and evaluate the video, and produced a companion package. Safe in the City has been selected to be among 18 interventions recommended in the Centers for Disease Control’s Diffusion of Effective Behavioral Interventions program.