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Syphilis Testing

March 11, 2024

Health Unit reminding Residents of Testing for Syphilis

The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit is reminding residents about a local rise in cases of syphilis, and to consider getting tested for syphilis.

Syphilis is a bacterial infection that can be transmitted through unprotected oral, vaginal or anal sex with an infected partner, including through mutual masturbation and sharing of sex toys. It can spread by direct contact with bacteria contained in syphilitic sores or rashes. It can also be passed from an infected mother to her infant during pregnancy.

You and your partner may not always have noticeable symptoms. Testing and treatment can prevent serious health problems. Testing for syphilis is recommended when people have new or multiple partners (and upon request of the individual). For those with multiple partners, testing can be done every 3 to 6 months.

If you are pregnant or planning on having a baby it is important to get tested. Early detection and treatment can prevent health problems for you and your baby.

To access free testing, visit a Health Unit sexual health clinic in one of seven different locations across Leeds, Grenville and Lanark. Staff are non-judgemental, welcoming those of all ages, genders and sexual orientations into safe and positive spaces. Clients who attend these clinics do not need to have a health card or a primary health care provider.

The Health Unit also is involved with the University of Ottawa’s GetAKit program that provides at-home testing kits for HIV and other Sexually Transmitted Infections. These kits can be ordered directly from the Health Unit website and are mailed to your home at no cost.

Anyone seeking additional information can reach out through the Health Unit email address: [email protected] or call the toll free number: 1-800-660-5853 to speak to a public health nurse.

Accessing local Sexual Health clinics is easier than ever with the Health Unit’s new online booking system, however anyone without a computer can still call the Health Unit directly to arrange an appointment.  Clinics in Brockville, Smiths Falls, Gananoque, Kemptville and Almonte may also be able to offer services to walk-ins, however appointments are highly encouraged.


For interviews, contact: [email protected]