British backpackers spreading sexually transmitted diseases

“No sex please, we’re British.”

That old joke has been proven wrong by a new medical study that found British backpackers in Australia are picking up more than just short-term partners; they’re picking up infections that they spread around Australia and back home.

A survey of 1,008 backpackers at youth hostels in Sydney and Cairns revealed that 24 percent of British backpackers had unprotected sex with multiple partners, meaning 24 percent of British backpackers are total idiots. About half of those interviewed reported inconsistent condom use. The report found that even those who arrived with a partner were getting in on the act, with almost 20 percent them hopping into bed with someone else.

Australia receives an influx of almost 700,000 Britons a year, many of them backpackers, and while the study did not specifically check for Sexually Transmitted Diseases (called Sexually Transmitted Infections by those randy Brits) it doesn’t take a medical expert to put two and two together. In fact, the UK government last year reported that chlamydia, genital herpes, and genital warts are at an all-time high, with the 16-24 age group being the most affected.

Please, guys, wrap your John Thomas. And ladies, make the guys wrap their John Thomas. If you’re British, why not use a Big Ben condom like the one shown here? It’s a great way to inject some of your national culture into the local population.

Went to Beijing without your condoms? Buy a bus card

Safe sex is going high-tech in Beijing. The old, bright yellow coin-operated condom dispensers were finally ditched by the city’s authorities. They will be replaced by state of the art vending machines that look more like touch screen ATMs than the final stop for those who are about to get their naughty on. The government has installed 411 of the machines already. thousand’s more will be popping up over the coming months. They will be located near bars, nightclubs, in hotels, and adjacent to construction sites.

The Beijing AIDS Prevention Committee has made a deal with the city’s public transportation arm. All you have to do is swipe your OneCard (used for bus and subway fares) and out comes your prophylactic (which costs 5 yuan). And it talks too. (No, not the rubber, the machine). The brightly lit LCD screens will broadcast safe sex and anti-AIDS messages throughout the day.

[via Danwei]

Missing in Mexico: 5000 condoms, one truck and an inflatable “banana”

Attention Gadling readers in Mexico; keep your eyes open for a truck carrying 5000 condoms, 800 HIV tests and one 23 foot inflatable banana (wearing a condom).

The truck should stand out in traffic, because the sides are painted with that same banana, which from what I understand, is not a standard factory delivered color.

The Condomovil was parked outside a house in Mexico City, but by morning it was gone. Police have no idea what the motive could be (I can think of several reasons). The value of the stolen truck and its contents is about 200,000 Pesos, a little over $18,000.

The truck has been touring Mexico since 1998, and the project has since handed out over 1.2 million condoms. Unless the Condomovil is found, the project will be canceled which would be quite a blow to the Mexican federal health department.

Safe Sex Around the Globe

So Western Europe, particularly the Nordic countries, are ‘all that’? Maybe not, when it comes to safe sex.

There’s a very interesting graphic in this month’s Foreign Policy magazine regarding which countries practice safe sex and get STDs (sexually transmitted diseases).

The study (more parts of which appear here) was sponsored by Durex condoms and put together by Miguel Fontes of Johns Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health. Over 317,000 people in 41 countries were surveyed about when they first had sex, what the rates of STD infection are, and whether they practice unsafe sex without knowing their partner’s history.

The worst of those surveyed? Norway. That country gets the worst record in terms of STD infection rate and percentage of people who practice unsafe sex. Sweden, Finland, and Denmark are also on the wall of shame. Subsequently, those are also the countries with the highest standard of living. Is there a correlation here?