Courtesy of Brazil's government, Brazilians with a sexual transmitted disease (STD) will now be ableÂ to tell their partners about their situation using the Internet. It's all part of a state campaign named "Muito prazer, sexo sem DST" (Much pleasure, sex without STD).
Internet surfers will have virtual cards available to tell anonymously their sexual partners that they found out they are positive for some sexual illness.
A jingle recorded by 12 country singers, among them Daniel and the Chitãozinho e Xororó duo – is being presented as the main course for this awareness campaign. The song should soon be heard in radios all over the country.
According to the Brazilian Health Ministry,Â about 10 million Brazilians have already had some kind of sexually transmissible disease. Most of them, 6.6 million, are men. But there are still plenty of women: 3.7 million. A problem is that 18% of men and 11.4% of women don't seek treatment, which makes them 18 times more prone to be infected by AIDS.
The Health Ministry survey reveals another worrisome information: Brazilians, especially men, have the bad habit of self medication. While 99% of women who look for treatment seek the advice of a doctor, 25% of men prefer to get health recommendations from a pharmacy clerk, often not a pharmacist.
These until now unpublished data are part of the Research on Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices of the Brazilian Population Between 15 and 64 Years of Age, a study known as PCAP – DST, 2008).
"People often have a hard time telling that they are infected," says Mariângela Simão, director of the Health Ministry's STD and AIDS Department. "The new communication technologies help to tackle these diseases in a straightforward way and minimum exposure."
As part of the governmental campaign there will be distribution of 1 million brochures, 600,000 stickers for bathrooms, 180,000 posters and 60,000 postcards. The nervous center of the whole drive is a site with information on how to prevent and treat STDs.