In 2017, nearly 160 000 people were newly diagnosed with HIV in the WHO European Region, marking another year of alarming HIV numbers in the Region. However, the pace of increase is slowing compared to previous years. Continuing a trend that has persisted for the last decade, the majority (82%; over 130 000) of people newly diagnosed in 2017 were from the eastern part of the Region – the highest number ever. Of the remaining diagnoses, 14% were reported from the western part and 4% from the central part. At the same time, countries in the European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA) reported a decline in rates of new diagnoses, mainly driven by a 20% decrease since 2015 among men who have sex with men. These numbers contribute to an estimated 2.3 million people living with HIV in the Region today, among whom 1 in 5 are estimated to be unaware of their infection. Just over half of those diagnosed in the Region are diagnosed at a late stage of infection.

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“Nothing feels better than being confident that you are healthy” – a young man’s experience of PrEP

PrEP, which stands for pre-exposure prophylaxis, is the use of medication that radically reduces the risk of an HIV-negative individual getting infected through sexual contact with an HIV-positive partner. WHO recommends offering PrEP to anyone who is at substantial risk of HIV infection. Groups considered at risk include men who have sex with men, sex workers and people who inject drugs.


World AIDS Day 2018

Half of people with HIV in the WHO European Region are diagnosed late

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