AHF started its activities in Ukraine in 2009 by supporting ART decentralization in close cooperation with the state health care facilities. Currently AHF carries out HIV testing and clinical programs in the country as well as actively promoting condom use by means of public awareness campaigns.
At present AHF-Ukraine is providing diagnostics, prevention and treatment of opportunistic infections and tuberculosis. In most of the regions AHF carries out training sessions for social workers on medical issues of HIV/AIDS.
In November 2016 AHF opened in Kyiv the first Checkpoint in Eastern Europe.
On World AIDS Day-2016 the integrated care site for HIV/TB/OST patients was launched in cooperation with the Kyiv City Health Care Department.
Ukraine remains one of the European leaders in terms of new HIV infection cases. According to UNAIDS experts’ assessment about 223,000 people in Ukraine live with HIV/AIDS however every second person living with HIV is not aware about his/her HIV status.
Ukraine is a country with a concentrated HIV epidemic which is centered in specific key populations with high risk of HIV.
Since 2008 the main cause of HIV transmission has been sexual contacts. In 2016 over 60% of newly infected got HIV through sexual contacts (57% in 2014).
Today most of the newly – registered cases of HIV infection are amongst young people aged from 15 to 30. According to UCDC 15,808 new HIV cases were registered in 2015 and 17,064 new HIV cases – in 2016.
Challenges to controlling the HIV epidemic include: the lack of services for injecting drug users (IDUs), stigma surrounding men having sex with men (MSM), and limited access to affordable condoms and HIV testing. Even though more than half of new HIV registered cases are from heterosexual transmission, prevention and testing programs targeting the general population are still scarce.
Since 2015 the government introduced Test and Treat approach and in 2016 state budget allocations for HIV/AIDS was increased by 140%. Current health care reform in Ukraine is based on the public health approach.
About 90 percent of new HIV infections in Eastern Europe and Central Asia happen in Ukraine or Russia. Challenges to controlling the HIV epidemic include: the lack of services for injecting drug users (IDUs), stigma surrounding men having sex with men (MSM), and limited access to affordable condoms and HIV testing. Even though more than half of new HIV registered cases are from heterosexual transmission, prevention and testing programs targeting the general population are still scarce. Frequently changing legislation and unwillingness to change service delivery models create additional barriers to controlling the epidemic. In 2013, as little as 30 percent of those in need of antiretroviral treatment were receiving it.