HIV Prevention in Latvia Nearly Non-Existent Due to Multiple Reorganizations
August 5, 2010
Organizational changes and staff shortages are hampering the fight against HIV/AIDS in Latvia, a local expert there says. And both problems have been partly responsible for the lack of outreach to high-risk groups documented in a recent UNICEF report, said Iveta Skripste, a public health methodologist with the Latvian Center of Infectious Diseases. The report highlights the need for HIV prevention services among vulnerable youth in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, especially those involved with the sex trade and drug use.
Since 2008, intravenous drug use has fallen as the top mode of HIV infection in Latvia, Skripste said. Last year, 49 percent of new cases were linked to heterosexual sex, and 27 percent were acquired through drug use. "But those infected through heterosexual contacts are closely related to the community of drug users," said Skripste.
Baltic News Service
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
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