Expedited partner therapy for sexually transmitted diseases: Assessing the legal environment

James G. Hodge, Amy Pulver, Matthew Hogben, Dhrubajyoti Bhattacharya, Erin Fuse Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


An emerging alternative to traditional partner management for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is expedited partner therapy (EPT), which involves the delivery of medications or prescriptions to STD patients for their partners without the clinical assessment of the partners. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently recommended EPT nationally in limited circumstances; however, its implementation may raise legal concerns. We analyzed laws relevant to the distribution of medications to persons withwhomclinicians have not personally treated or established a relationship. We determined that three fourths of states or territories either expressly permit EPT or do not expressly prohibit the practice. We recommend (1) expressly endorsing EPT through laws, (2) creating exceptions to existing prescription requirements, (3) increasing professional board or association support for EPT, and (4) supporting third-party payments for partners' medications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-243
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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