(WFXR) – The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is turning its attention to rising syphilis cases.
Health officials say they are concerned about the number of infants born who contract the disease from their mothers.
Ten years ago the department said no cases were reported, but last year 17 cases were reported during childbirth.
According to the VDH, “Up to 40% of infants born to women with untreated syphilis are stillborn or die of the infection shortly thereafter.”
State Health Commissioner Colin M. Greene said syphilis will be one of the agency’s biggest post-pandemic priorities.