In the past year Uganda has passed four laws which defy public health principles and show blatant disregard for dignity and human rights. These laws target individuals who are already marginalized by society and most in need of health services and support: people who sell sex to make ends meet for their families; LGBTI people living in fear of community violence; people hiding their HIV medication from their own families; and people struggling to manage drug dependence and other illnesses. Perhaps most harmful of all, parts of Ugandan society are interpreting these laws to justify violence and exclusion.
17 December 2014 | Open Society Foundation
Occasional heroin use by HIV-positive patients may be particularly harmful to the immune system and worsens HIV disease, compared to persistent or no heroin use, an international team of researchers reports.
17 December 2014 | Science Daily
Kiev may be facing an unprecedented tuberculosis crisis. This is according to Larissa Kanarovskaya, the Head of the Kiev City Union of health workers. On December 1, 2014, at a press conference (a video in Russian can be seen here), she announced that on the average, 100 people die every day in Ukraine’s capital, of which one case is from active tuberculosis.
17 December 2014 | TB Europe Coalition
Restrictive policies that can sometimes prevent people from keeping their jobs could be compromising the effectiveness of Global Fund-supported opioid substitution therapy programs across Eastern Europe and Central Asia, civil society representatives from around the region told Aidspan.
15 December 2014 | Aidspan
There is no one particular reason for Greece’s stringent policies on HIV. Rather, the combination of political power plays, economic instability, and societal fear planted the seeds for criminalization of the disease.
10 December 2014 | The Politic
Lax oversight of blood banks means about a fifth of patients in Pakistan who get regular transfusions have been infected with hepatitis, a top government health official said on Friday. Some also get HIV.
09 December 2014 | HepatitisCNewDrugs
The EMCDDA warns that new HIV infections related to the injection of drugs – including stimulants – have been reported in many countries, particularly in Eastern Europe. Of particular concern is the fact that many of the injecting-related cases in Europe are detected too late. Special attention should be given to providing these often hard-to-reach groups of drug users with adequate prevention messages, early diagnosis and treatment referral and to scaling up effective integrated harm reduction measures.
02 December 2014 | EMCDDA
Health authorities in Greece say the number of HIV infections fell in 2013 for the first time since the start of the financial crisis. In its annual report issued Tuesday, Greece's Center for Disease Control and Prevention said the number of new infections nationwide fell by 20%, from 920 last year from 1,188 in 2012. This is largely due to a 52% decline in infections in people who inject drugs after a sharp spike in infections in 2012.
26 November 2014 | Greek Centre for Disease Control and Prevention
Handing the reins to the Department of Health might seem a liberal-minded approach, but it could mean less is spent on treatment. Drug use simply doesn’t cause as much ill-health as other risky behaviours, so isn't prioritised by health officials. But it is seen as a major cause of crime.
25 November 2014 | The Guardian
A response to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions' article "Now fight the methadone industry that keeps addicts hooked".
25 November 2014 | DrugScope