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Am J Public Health. 2015 Aug;105(8):1675-80. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2014.302434. Epub 2015 Feb 17.

A Low-Cost Partner Notification Strategy for the Control of Sexually Transmitted Diseases: A Case Study From Louisiana.

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Mohammad M. Rahman and DeAnn Gruber are with the STD/HIV Program, Louisiana Office of Public Health, New Orleans. Mahmud Khan is with the Department of Health Services Policy and Management, University of South Carolina, Columbia.



We estimated the costs and effectiveness of implementing a partner notification (PN) strategy for highly prevalent sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) within the Louisiana STD/HIV Program.


We carried out a telephone-based PN approach on an experimental basis in 2 public STD clinics in Louisiana from June 2010 to May 2012. We monitored data on the resources used for identifying, tracing, treating, and managing the infected cases and their partners to estimate the intervention costs.


Our results indicated that implementation of telephone-based PN should not increase the STD control program's expenses by more than 4.5%. This low-cost PN approach could successfully identify and treat 1 additional infected case at a cost of only $171. We found that the cost per disability-adjusted life year averted (a health outcome measure), because of the adoption of selective screening with partner tracing, was $4499. This was significantly lower than the gross domestic product per capita of the United States, a threshold used for defining highly cost-effective health interventions.


Adoption of PN for gonorrhea and chlamydia should be considered a national strategy for prevention and control of these diseases.

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