Operational considerations for the provision of the HIV continuum of care for refugees from Ukraine in the EU/EEA
This document provides an overview of key considerations for the provision of the HIV continuum of care in the context of displaced people from Ukraine in the EU/EEA.
More than six million people have been forced to migrate across borders since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. From a humanitarian and public health perspective, it is vital that Ukrainians living with HIV and/or at risk for HIV who are displaced from Ukraine have access to HIV testing, treatment, and care services in European Union/European Economic Area (EU/EEA) countries. The Council of the European Union has adopted a Temporary Protection Directive, which offers an appropriate response to the present situation by providing immediate protection and rights, including rights to medical assistance. However, there have been calls for an urgent response and strengthening of services to ensure that Ukrainian refugees living with HIV and/or at risk for HIV are able to access care that is equitable, confidential, and harmonised with care received in Ukraine. This document outlines key considerations to inform decision-making and practical service implementation to maintain quality standards of HIV care.
Scope of this document
This document provides an overview of key considerations for the provision of the HIV continuum of care in the context of displaced people from Ukraine in the EU/EEA. This document has two aims: firstly, to outline what is known of the Ukrainian HIV epidemic, and secondly, to use the HIV continuum of care as a framework to set out suggestions based on published evidence and expert opinion on the management of the HIV continuum of care, with special consideration for people living with HIV from Ukraine. The document will also address the needs of those at risk of acquiring HIV. The main findings of this document were presented during an ECDC webinar, ‘Key considerations on the continuum of HIV care for refugees from Ukraine,’ hosted on 19 May 2022.