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Special Communication
June 1, 1964

Venereal Disease and Homosexuality

JAMA. 1964;188(9):811-812. doi:10.1001/jama.1964.03060350037009

SPREAD OF venereal diseases by homosexuals has been recognized throughout the world as well as in the United States,1-3 but relatively little has been published on the subject. Although there is increasing awareness of the problem, there is concern whether physicians and health departments are fully prepared to provide proper medical, public health, and epidemiological measures, including confidential handling of information.4,5 The purpose of this communication is to bring into focus some significant medical and public health considerations and practices. The material presented is based on venereal disease conferences held in California, experiences in local venereal disease programs, and review of the literature.

Incidence.—  Health workers find varying degrees of homosexual implication in the spread of venereal disease. The highest percentage occurs with infectious syphilis, a far lower percentage with gonorrhea. The degree to which homosexuality is implicated in a local venereal disease problem appears to be proportionate

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