Group introduces new recommendations, database for adult film performers

The porn trade group Free Speech Coalition is spearheading a program that will provide a new list of recommended health care providers for performers in the adult film industry. The results of the performers' STD testing will be loaded into a new industry database as part of an STD prevention initiative, according to The Associated Press.

"We will be able to provide a list of recommended providers to our performers and ensure that they will have sensitivity to the client base that we'd be bringing to these providers," executive director of the Free Speech Coalition Diane Duke said at a news conference on Thursday, the AP reports.

The database and list of medical professionals comes shortly after a clinic known as AIM, which was a go-to spot for adult performers, was shut down following a series of questionable practices. The Free Speech Coalitions program, titled Adult Production Health and Safety Services, will effectively replace AIM, but won't open one specific clinic.

The new list of health care providers should be released to performers within a week. The database will allow producers, actors and health officials to track diagnoses of sexually transmitted infections, but the database will be password protected to prevent a breach of privacy.

Male actors who have been diagnosed with HIV but are regularly using condoms during filming will be exempt from the database.

The new services will hopefully help prevent scenarios in which an adult film performer is diagnosed with an STD but unable to trace the infection to the person of origin. Such was the case with actor Derrick Burts, who was diagnosed with HIV in December.

Burts was allegedly told to cover up his status, avoid media attention and change his phone number, the news source reports. The new program aims for transparency, and hopes to maintain actors' privacy while still encouraging them to come forward with any STD diagnoses.

Awareness of sexually transmitted infections seems to be lowering the instances of several STDs, which suggests that more people may be practicing safer sex. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the national gonorrhea rate was at its lowest level ever recorded in 2009.

In that same year, for the first time in five years, reported cases of syphilis among women did not increase. Still, the organization reports that less than half of people who should have undergone STD screening received screening services in 2009. 

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