While only 0.1% of people in Lithuania are living with HIV, the percentage of people who have been tested is likewise low, with fewer than 1 in 5 Lithuanians aware of their status. Free testing is limited for the people who need it most, such as the injecting drug users historically most affected by HIV, and access to affordable condoms remains a challenge due to conservative attitudes in the government.
- Population: 3.3 million
- People living with HIV: 2,060
- People receiving ART: 236
AHF in Lithuania
In 2010-2012, AHF began work in Lithuania through a partnership with Demetra, a HIV/AIDS organization based in Vilnius. Together, we provide mobile HIV testing for hard-to-reach groups, free condom distribution, social marketing encouraging condom use, and advocacy on treatment and testing access issues. Since 2010 Demetra is a leader in rapid HIV testing and providing more than 10,000 HIV tests per year. Testing is performing together with HIV positive linkage to health care system and psychosocial support and with trainings for medical staff.
AHF and Demetra have built relationships with commercial collaborators and put them to innovative use. During a condom promotion campaign in 2012, the Lithuanian edition of Cosmopolitan magazine included AHF-branded LOVE condoms and a message asking readers to protect themselves and their partners. A McDonald’s restaurant near the main Vilnius train and bus stations participated in a testing campaign with Demetra by offering free meal vouchers to those who got tested at a nearby outreach tent.
Statistics from UNAIDS.org, 2011, unless otherwise stated.
AHF Services in Lithuania
AHF provides mobile HIV testing in and around Vilnius. We also distribute free condoms through marketing campaigns and outreach events.
AHF Eastern Europe & Central Asia Bureau
Zoya Shabarova, Eastern Europe & Central Asia Bureau Chief
1017 EK Amsterdam
Mobile: + 1 323 217 2869