New WHO Collaborating Centre for Harm Reduction in Lithuania

WHO has recently established a collaborating centre for harm reduction at the Vilnius University Public Health Institute (PHI). It was launched with with the support of Eurasian Harm Reduction Network (EHRN) and the Vilnius Centre for Addictive Disorders.

Harm reduction is a set of policies, programmes, services and actions that aim to reduce the harm to individuals, communities and society related to drugs, including HIV infection. Lithuania has been one of the region's leaders in implementing WHO recommendations on HIV prevention among people who inject drugs.

“WHO’s designation of the Lithuanian Public Health Institute (PHI) as the first WHO Collaborating Centre on Harm Reduction reaffirms the importance of and our commitment to applying evidence-informed interventions when responding to HIV in the European Region”, says Martin Donoghoe, Programme Manager, HIV/AIDS, STIs & Viral Hepatitis for the WHO Regional Office for Europe.