Migration is an important issue for HIV programming in Europe and Central Asia. Migrants from countries with generalised HIV epidemics are particularly affected by HIV in many countries, particularly in the EU/EFTA. There is evidence from some countries that migrants may be disproportionately represented among key affected populations, such as sex workers and people who inject drugs. Very few countries have data available on HIV prevalence among specific migrant populations.
Many countries throughout the region, particularly in the EU/EFTA, regard migrants as an important sub-population for their national response to HIV. Countries have many examples of different types of HIV programmes and services for migrants. However, very few countries have data available on the coverage of such services, for example, the rates of HIV testing among migrant populations.
Countries report qualitative data on the difficulties faced by some migrant populations in accessing certain HIV services in some countries. For example, undocumented migrants face difficulties in accessing antiretroviral therapy in a number of different countries. Many of these difficulties relate to ineligibility for access to free
treatment, e.g. because of lack of health insurance.
There is evidence from a number of countries of higher rates of late HIV diagnosis among migrant populations.Countries provided examples of a wide range of services for different types of migrants. There are a number of good examples of active involvement of migrant communities in these programmes.
However, although a number of countries report that they are systematically monitoring the delivery of HIV programmes for migrants, the availability of data remains very limited. This is particularly true for the standard indicators for which ECDC requested data in this round of reporting. Countries are aware that migrants face a number of obstacles and difficulties in seeking to access HIV programmes and services. These include language barriers, cultural differences, lack of information, fear, stigma and discrimination. In some cases, there are policy or legal barriers to migrants receiving HIV services.