What has been done to stop the rise of HIV infection
Every year more countries find HIV/AIDS. In many countries,
effective programmes have begun to prevent or deal with escalating
HIV infection and to reverse existing HIV epidemics.
The strategies these programmes have used include:
◗ ensuring access to clean injecting equipment and removing
contaminated equipment from circulation;
◗ expanding drug dependence treatment (such as providing methadone
or buprenorphine); and
◗ peer-based outreach to distribute HIV prevention materials and
to provide information about HIV testing, counselling and drug
What drugs are being injected?
◗ Although not designed for injecting, water-soluble drugs are the most
◗ Around the world, heroin and cocaine (produced mainly from illicit
refineries) are the most commonly injected drugs.
◗ The injecting of amphetamines (bought from pharmacies or from
illicit laboratories) is on the increase.
◗ Pharmaceutical preparations commonly injected include buprenorphine,dextropropoxyphene compounds, benzodiazepines and barbiturates.
WHAT ARE THE MAIN ISSUES TO BE EXAMINED?
Before suitable interventions can be developed to address the issues of HIV/AIDS and injecting drug use, the aims and objectives need to be identified. These include the following.
◗ How many IDUs are there? Who are they? Have there have been recent
changes in their drug-using behaviour?
◗ Why is injecting spreading or about to spread? How is it affecting the
health of the IDUs and what is the political and social context of the
◗ What are the risk factors for the health of IDUs (including both drug
use and sexual activity)?
◗ What is the prevalence of bloodborne viruses (HIV, hepatitis B and
hepatitis C), overdoses and other negative health results of drug use?
◗ Is there any government policy response to drug injecting? Are there
any programmes dealing with or targeting the health needs of IDUs?
◗ Are there money and resources (such as staff and organizations) and
the ability and desire to intervene?
◗ What sort of interventions might work and be acceptable, affordable