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New Mexico urges syphilis testing for all pregnant mothers

<em>Treponema pallidum, </em>the bacterium that causes syphilis<em>,</em> looks like a writhing snake under a microscope.
Science Source
Treponema pallidum, the bacterium that causes syphilis, looks like a writhing snake under a microscope.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico health officials are renewing a public health order aimed at protecting newborn babies from syphilis. The state Health Department on Wednesday announced requirements that medical providers follow best practices by testing all pregnant women for syphilis multiple times. The agency says that New Mexico had the highest rate of congenital syphilis cases among states in 2020, when there were 42 local cases of newborn babies contracting the disease from their mothers. Sharply rising cases of some sexually transmitted diseases are prompting U.S. health officials to call for new prevention and treatment efforts.