VILNIUS - The spread of HIV infection in Lithuania is the slowest among all the Baltic states, according to a United Nations report released on Feb. 17, which praised the Baltic country for its efforts in stemming proliferation of the disease.
"This has been achieved through timely, coordinated preventive activity intended for the highest-risk groups of people. In such way Lithuania has succeeded in curbing the first waves of HIV transmission among homosexual men, sailors, intravenous drug users, Roma and prisoners," reads the U.N. Development Program's report on the spread of HIV/AIDS epidemic in 28 states of Eastern and Southeastern Europe.
The document noted that the "introduction of new preventive programs among risk groups has helped to slow the general spread of HIV in Lithuania."
Some 851 people were diagnosed with HIV in Lithuania during the entire HIV registration period, from 1988 to the beginning of February 2004. Most of them contracted HIV through intravenous drugs.
From 1998 to 2003, 64 persons were diagnosed with AIDS (59 men and 5 women). Thirteen HIV-infected persons died last year.