According to the data of February 11, 2008 by the scientific centre for Infectious pathologies, AIDs and clinical immunology, 1534 cases of AIDs positives have been registered in Georgia.
60.4% out of the registered persons are IV drug users.
The number of the positives is considerably high in Imereti – namely, 198 HIV positives were revealed in Kutaisi.
Harm reduction program for non-medical use of drug has not been established yet in Imereti. The need for its existence is obvious considering the prevalence of HIV/AIDs throughout the region. However, the 6th cycle of needle exchange program funded by the Global fund to fight AIDs, TB and Malaria will be soon launched in Kutaisi (the program will be administered by Harm Reduction Georgia Network).
With the aim of preparing the basis to operation of the needle exchange program and in general, for informing the society on the harm reduction approach and promoting the comprehension of harm reduction principles, on March 6, 2008 a meeting
was held in Kutaisi at the office of Newspaper “P.S” with the representatives of local society in terms of Harm Reduction Georgia Network current project “Harm Reduction Advocacy program”.
The representatives of local healthcare departments, law enforcement bodies, NGOs and Mass Media participated in round table meeting.
Printed and electronic media were actively involved in the process of information dissemination. 15 journalists attended the meeting. A story was prepared and broadcasted via TV companies “Rioni”, “Mega – TV”, radio “Old Tbilisi” and “Radio Kutaisi”.
Meeting participants were provided with the information on the Harm Reduction Georgia Network and current harm reduction programs, The Global Fund Project, new legislative initiative and the essence of alternative, non-repressive approach to drug dependence problem.
After the meeting Kutaisi regional centre of Addiction declared its willingness for affiliation with Harm Reduction Georgia Network.
National Public Health Program