Published: Thu, November 29, 2018
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

New cases of HIV rise in Eastern Europe

New cases of HIV rise in Eastern Europe

Federal Minister National Health Services Aamer Mehmood Kiani said that government was committed to making honest efforts for increasing the access to and uptake of HIV preventive and treatment services by engaging with all stakeholders to promote HIV awareness and minimise stigma and discrimination against the disease.

More than 130,000 of the new diagnoses came from the eastern part of Europe. Every second person diagnosed with HIV has already reached an advanced stage in the infection.

Over 80 new cases of HIV were diagnosed in Northern Ireland past year, according to a new report by the Public Health Agency (PHA).

WHO Regional Director for Europe Zsuzsanna Jakab has called forth the governments to "scale up" their responses.

As nearly two-thirds of the 1.2 million people across the region with transmissible virus are diagnosed but only half of those are on treatment, "the biggest public health impact could be achieved through rapid and sustained scale up of treatment", according to the authors. Some 37 million people worldwide are infected with HIV. In Western Europe, however, the number of infectious is reduced, such as from a recent report by the world health organization (WHO) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

During 2017, of the 84 new cases diagnosed in Northern Ireland, 45 (54%) occurred through MSM transmission, while 26 (31%) occurred through heterosexual transmission. Still, almost 160,000 people were newly diagnosed with the infection in the region in 2017.

New infections of HIV have dropped by 16 percent since 2010, and 47 percent since the crisis was at its peak in 1996, when 3.4 million people across the world were diagnosed.

Those who inject drugs using a hypodermic needle are 23 times more likely to catch HIV and female sex workers 13 percent more likely.

Despite this measurable progress in reducing the number of new HIV diagnoses, overall rates continue to increase in about one third of EU/EEA countries.

The number of AIDS cases continued to decline in the Region as a whole. In the EU/EEA, 9 out of 10 (89%) AIDS diagnoses in 2017 happened within only 90 days of the HIV diagnosis, indicating that the majority of AIDS cases in the EU/EEA could have been avoided with early diagnosis.

The HIV epidemic in Europe is still growing at an alarming rate, particularly in Eastern Europe, according to a new report.

State medical and health authorities have started community based HIV testing, based on the theme formulated by the United Nations.

In a report published on 29 November 2018, PHE said the UK had met all of the targets set by the UN to promote HIV prevention, adding that the UK should "identify new priorities that, if achieved, could accelerate the falls in HIV transmission that are well underway". As a result, country-specific roadmaps are in development to reinforce a common agenda among key policy-makers, partners, funders and implementers.

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