Health training for commercial sex workers
Denpasar: Students from the University of Udayana’s School of Medicine have been conducting a campaign to train commercial sex workers on safe-sex procedures.
Taking place in Denpasar’s crowded red-light district on Jl. Danau Tempe in Sanur, the students provided information to around 30 sex workers about various sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and how to avoid contracting them.
They also discussed high-risk sexual activities, including condoms not being worn during sexual intercourse as well as other issues such as genital hygiene and practicing safe sex.
Kadek Moleh, the owner of a house in the district, said he always encouraged sex workers to persuade their clients to wear condoms. “The key factor lies in the willingness of these sex workers to ask clients to use them,” Moleh said.
Sari (not her real name) said she always urged her clients to use condoms. “I am so scared of contracting a deadly disease,” she said.
Irene Nadia, coordinator of the student campaign, said the campaign was aimed at increasing awareness among young sex workers to understand various health risks due to unhealthy sexual activities.
Dr. Oka Negara, who specializes in reproductive and teenage health, said that educating sex workers was urgent to prevent them from contracting sexually-related illnesses.
Dr. Ketut Suryana, head of a voluntary counseling and testing clinic at Wangaya Regional Hospital in Denpasar, said that the spread of STDs among heterosexuals was increasing.
Since 1987, 5,917 cases of sexually transmitted diseases have been treated in the clinic, he said.
“Sex education is important for young people generally, as well as high-risk groups,” he said.