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Thursday, February 5, 2009

Walking Penis Highlights Local Doc's Wildly Effective STD Prevention Soap Opera

Posted By on Thu, Feb 5, 2009 at 7:30 AM

Coming soon to an STD clinic near you!
  • Coming soon to an STD clinic near you!
The San Francisco Department of Public Health is proud to announce that Safe in the City -- a dramatic 23-minute STD prevention video developed by an SFDPH official -- has given the Centers for Disease Control a giant boner.

This week, the CDC chose Safe in the City for inclusion in its 2008 Compendium of Evidence-based HIV Prevention Interventions, which essentially means that the video has been scientifically proven to to reduce STD-related risky behaviors, and that it will be utilized in a guide for prevention practitioners.

Curious to see what people will be increasingly watching in waiting rooms of STD clinics across America, I checked out the Website for Safe in the City and watched the video.

Now, if you happen to have 23 extra minutes (and if you're reading this, you probably do), I cannot suggest strongly enough that you view this video. No, not because you're a slut. Because it's high-quality drama! It's like a multi-cultural Melrose Place, with every plot line involving STDs. Paul is about to get serious with a new girlfriend Jasmine when he slips, and hooks up with a hot ex, Teresa, but it turns out she has the clap. Trouble! Then Teresa asked out by Luis, who wants to do it raw dog. Uh oh! Finally, a bisexual guy -- Rubin -- cheats on his girlfriend, Christina, with another man, who gives him something that makes it really painful to take piss. Now that's entertainment, people. Did I mention there are two brief interludes where we learn how to use condoms from a walking penis?

Congrats to Jeffrey Klausner, the UCSF clinical professor and  director of STD Prevention and Control Services at the San Francisco Department of Public Health, who figured out that people like drama with their learning. He tested Safe in the City between 2003 and 2005, by recruiting 38,635 patients at clinics in San Francisco, Denver, and Long Beach. Clinicians screened the video in waiting rooms during alternative months, and at the end of the study, the group that had visited the clinic during the months the film was playing had 10 percent fewer infections than the control group. 

Please don't stop here, Klausner. We simply must know if Rubin will ever change.

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Ashley Harrell


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