Drug Demand Reduction and HIV/AIDS

National drug use survey (2013) reveals a high prevalence of substance use: according to estimates, more than four million people in Pakistan are dependent on drugs. This number indicates that there is a high demand for more accessible drug use prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation services.

People who inject drugs and share their needles bear a high risk of HIV infection exposing their intimate partners and children as well, and several studies have detected high prevalence of risk behaviors among prisoners. According to a national survey (2017) there are currently over 130,000 people living with HIV or AIDS in the country. Despite the availability of various HIV prevention methods, new infections have not decreased notably – in fact, Pakistan is among the countries with a growing number of HIV patients. To respond to this challenge, there is an urgent need to scale up HIV prevention, treatment, and harm reduction services in communities and in prisons to prevent spread of disease and stigmatization of people living with the disease.

UNODC aims to increase accessibility and quality of drug treatment services for vulnerable populations, in particular for women, children, and prisoners. UNODC will work with the governmental institutions and non-governmental organizations to raise awareness of the risks related to drug use, to deliver effective drug treatment and rehabilitation services integrated into existing national systems, and to increase access to HIV prevention, treatment and care services for people who use intravenous drugs.


Major Threats



Our Solutions

  • Increase access to preventive services and quality drug treatment for vulnerable groups.
  • Expand capacity of stakeholders to better deliver evidence-based prevention/treatment against drugs and HIV/AIDS.
  • Foster understanding on the physical and mental health issues of the refugee population, especially women, children, and youth.


Major Outcomes

  • Strengthened multi-sectoral response to ensure availability of evidence-based drug dependence treatment services;
  • Enhanced evidence-based and coordinated community-level, youth-focused prevention interventions;
  • Enhanced evidence-based HIV prevention, treatment, and care services for people who inject drugs, their spouses, and the prison population.


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