Syphilis in New Zealand

Date Published: 
Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Massimo Giolo talks about the re-emergence of syphilis in NZ.  Massimo is a Consultant Physician working at Bay of Plenty DHB, with specialist training in infectious disease medicine as well as sexual health.

Over recent years there has been a progressive increase in syphilis, both within New Zealand and internationally. This increase is being seen across all age groups, ethnicities, and most regions in New Zealand.

The number of cases of syphilis has more than doubled between 2015 and 2017. Increasing testing is crucial to interrupt the spread of syphilis and to reduce the risk of long-term effects from undiagnosed syphilis.



  • international context
  • what we need to know about syphilis
  • diagnosis
  • treatment.

Take home messages

  • Syphilis is back!
  • In the absence of a vaccine, control relies on 'seek-and-destroy' approach to the bacteria.
  • We should test more frequently.
  • Multiple points of access and care, ideally free of charge are required: GP's, LMCs, Family Planning clinics, public free SHCs, NGOs, Māori health providers as starters.




Massimo Giola

Consultant Physician

To contact Massimo Click here.


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This presentation is intended for qualified health practitioners professional development and should not be relied upon for any other purpose. Any opinions offered are those of the presenter or other speaker and do not necessarily represent the views of Goodfellow Unit.