In 2008, an increased number of HIV infections created the need for more intense cooperation in the field of HIV prevention, which resulted in a coalition of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Slovenia, the Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Slovenia, and the non-governmental organisations Škuc, DIH and Legebitra. We have also been joined by other organisations as CARS and DŠMS. Other institutions are joining every day.
The rise in the number of new HIV infections is a cause of great concern. The most prominent actors in the field of prevention have joined forces with the common goal – to prevent as many new HIV infections as possible.
Based on the initiative of the Faculty of Social Sciences, and under the mentorship of Assistant Professor Dr Tanja Kamin, a communication campaign was launched in December 2009 for prevention of the spread of HIV in Slovenia among young people, under the slogan "Spread the word, not the virus!"; in addition, other communication activities for various population groups are also being planned.
HIV in numbers
Epidemiological monitoring is coordinated by the Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Slovenia. Quarterly and annual reports on the situation in the field of HIV and AIDS are available at the website of the Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Slovenia.
Summary of the situation in the HIV/AIDS field for 2008
In Slovenia, fewer than one in 1000 persons is infected by HIV; however, the number of infected persons is growing. In the period of the last ten years (1999-2008), 258 cases of HIV infection were identified in Slovenia, while 28 AIDS patients died.
In 2008, 48 HIV infections were identified, which is 270 per cent more than ten years ago and 30 per cent more than in 2007.
The growing number of new diagnoses since 2003 is a consequence in particular of a growing number of cases among men having sexual intercourses with men, which are the most affected group.
In 2008, 11 persons became ill with AIDS. Five AIDS patients died. The relatively low morbidity rate of AIDS and mortality rate after AIDS diagnosis are probably the result of good access to quality treatment of HIV infection. Since some diagnoses are late, we miss opportunities for more effective early treatment.
Due to the still relatively low number of infected persons, a prevention strategy in Slovenia is of utmost importance.