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City With The Highest Rate Of STIs In The UK Revealed

April 11, 2017

One city has been determined to have the highest rate of STIs in the UK. It has been awarded the unfavourable honour of being the place where you are most likely to catch a sexually transmitted infection. Read on to learn more!

highest rate of stis in the uk


Public Health England reported over 400,000 new diagnoses of STI were made in 2015.

One city came out particularly poorly when it came to sexual health with the highest rate of STIs in the UK.

London was responsible for 1 in 4 of all new cases of STIs detected. That’s over 100,000 sexually transmitted infections in one city in one year.

Of the top 20 local authorities in England with the highest rates of STIs, 16 were in the capital.

highest rate of stis in the uk

London has the highest rate of STIs in the UK

Despite a national decrease in infections, London maintained a 2% increase in STIs between 2014 and 2015. Numbers of two STIs in particular rose: Gonorrhoea by 21% and Syphilis by 19%.

This may be partly due to an increased amount of sexual health testing, Public Health England have said “high levels of condom-less sex account for a large amount of this rise”

The chance of contracting an STI in London is considerably higher than any other UK city with a rate of infections that is 65% higher than the national average.

Dr Yvonne Doyle, London regional director for Public Health England, said: “Worsening sexual health is one of the biggest public health concerns facing London and it is very worrying to see another year where STIs have increased in the capital.”

See below for a list of UK cities ranked by amount of new STI diagnoses in 2015:

1. London

2. Brighton and Hove

3. Plymouth

4. Manchester

5. Bournemouth

Public Health England publishes data showing diagnoses and other sexual and reproductive health outcomes by local area which can be accessed here.


Who is most at risk?


If you are having unprotected sex at all, in London or anywhere, your sexual health is at risk.

The impact of sexually transmitted infections remains greatest in young people and in men who have sex with men (MSM).

Men who have gay or bisexual relationships are advised to undergo HIV and STI tests at least once a year, or every three months if having unprotected sex with new or casual partners.

Young people aged between 15 to 24-year-olds accounted for 62% of those diagnosed with chlamydia, 52% with gonorrhoea, 51% with genital warts, and 41% with genital herpes in 2015.

highest rate of stis in the uk


MSM living in London have particularly poor sexual health, accounting for less than 2% of the adult population but nearly 25% of the new STI infections.

Gay and bisexual men represented 9 in 10 Syphilis infections and 7 in 10 cases of Gonorrhoea in GUM clinics in the city.

HIV is also a growing concern in the capital with 1 in 12 MSM in London living with the virus. 5,512 people were diagnosed with HIV in England in 2015. 47% of these were in London. Click here for more information on the symptoms of HIV

Remember that you don’t have to live in the city with the highest rate of STIs in the UK to catch one!

Risky sexual behaviour, multiple partners and not using protection are the main things that put you at risk. Always use condoms and make sure you are getting an STI test whenever you change sexual partner.


Worried you may have contracted an STI?


Regardless of what city you live in, if you think you might have been exposed to an STI, the most important thing is to get checked.

If you do have a sexually transmitted infection, getting checked early and accessing treatment is key for your health and to make sure you don’t pass the infection on to someone else.

With many STIs such as Chlamydia causing long-term complications like infertility if left untreated – getting checked if you think you may have been exposed is essential.


The LetsGetChecked Service


You can order online at or purchase a test in your local participating pharmacy. Your samples are taken in the comfort of your own home, and they are returned directly to an accredited laboratory by pre-paid return post.

highest rate of stis in the uk


The service, which delivers the results back to the customer within 2-3 days through a secure web portal, provides an alternative solution for those who might prefer the convenience and confidentiality of performing a test at home, rather than visiting a sexual health clinic.

Our expert nursing support team will be there to answer any questions you have about the service, as well to guide you through your personalised treatment program in the event your results are positive. LetsGetChecked users receive the same high quality, confidential testing practices as those who attend a clinic or GP.

For more information on Personal Sexual Health Testing please visit:

Check out more interesting articles on sexual health, fertility, cancer and general health on The LetsGetChecked Blog


Editors Note: This post was originally published in February 2016 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness. 

Written by Matthew Hennessy