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Utilizing Expedited Partner Therapy (EPT) to Support Pennsylvania Youth's Sexual Health

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Note: This Issue Brief was updated in March 2023 to reflect changes to the Pennsylvania policy landscape with the enactment of the Expedited Partner Therapy Act. 

Rates of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are at an all-time high, a trend that has only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Adolescents are disproportionately affected by STIs and are at elevated risk of being reinfected, usually because of resumed sexual contact with an untreated partner.

The good news is that many of these infections are easily curable with oral antibiotics that can be prescribed using expedited partner therapy (EPT). EPT is a patient-delivered partner therapy used to help prevent the spread of STIs by providing the patient with extra medication or a prescription to give their sex partner(s) who are unable or unwilling to seek treatment.

This brief highlights current evidence of the effectiveness of EPT, the importance of legislation specifically authorizing EPT for states that do not currently have it, and additional measures that would maximize EPT effectiveness in Pennsylvania with the enactment of the Expedited Partner Therapy Act. These actions will create a safe practice environment and encourage Pennsylvania’s medical providers to use EPT to treat their patients, including adolescents, and help to curb the spread of STIs.


Flynn EF, Krass P, Mollen CJ, Wood SM