Music

Dear Splendour Punters, There’s A Good Chance 1,000 Of You Have Chlamydia

Chlamydia is Australia's most wide-spread STI among young people -- why would Splendour be an exception?

If you were one of the 30,000 punters at Splendour In The Grass this weekend, sorry folks, but there’s a 1-in-30 chance you’ve got chlamydia.

According to NSW Health, 1000 festival-goers have chlamydia, Australia’s most wide-spread STI among young people. And while they may not necessarily have contracted it there, the statistic is worrying — especially given that festivals aren’t the most… celibate environment.

“STI rates in Australia are rising, with the number of chlamydia cases almost doubling over the past decade, and those most affected are aged 15 to 29,” Dr Chris Bourne, Head of NSW Health’s STI Program Unit said in a statement.

Of the 258,000 estimated chlamydia infections that took place in 2016 (via Sydney Morning Herald), it’s believed 72 percent went undiagnosed — therefore untreated.

Since more than half of chlamydia infections produce no symptoms, many people are simply unaware they have the STI, which if untreated can cause a variety of health complications, including infertility. It is easily cured by a single dose of antibiotics, and is best prevented by using a condom or dental dam during forms of sex involving sexual fluids.

Music festivals are a current educational focus for NSW Health, as they offer an opportunity to connect to punters. Hence why they set up ‘Down To Test‘, an on-festival site chlamydia-testing facility. If you were at Splendour, you probably saw a few knob-ends around, but there were also people wandering in giant penis costumes, prompting people towards the testing tent.

There, in exchange for a 5-minute test, which included providing an urine sample and basic details, punters had access to a ‘VIP area’ with phone-charging facilities, pristine toilets and a glitter station.

Punters who took part will receive their results within the week via text or phone call. Of course, these results will arrive post-festival — ideally, the statistics mentioned would inform punters about the importance of safe-sex, even at a festival.

Find more information on where you can test for chlamydia and other STIs in NSW, Victoria and Queensland.

Photo via Splendour in the Grass Facebook