Interesting to see the Australian chlamydia rate making news again; this time as motivation for a proposal to allow “patient-delivered partner therapy” (i.e., if you test positive for the bug at your GP she gives you an extra pack of antibiotics to share with your significant other(s); the idea being to prevent them reinfecting you after your course of antibiotics finishes).
For me these stories have a deep personal connection … a connection to our upcoming paper on estimating chlamydia incidence from the national notification and test counts spanning the past decade or so (using ABC!). 🙂 The point is that while these news stories quote the five-fold increase in the number of notifications (positive tests) since 2001, they don’t quote the corresponding increase in the number of tests conducted (the majority of which are conducted in the context of random screening). The novelty of our statistical analysis is that we show how to tease apart the effects of this random screening from a genuine increase in the incidence rate. Now that’s some sexy science!