Promoting access to HIV services for people who inject drugs

People who use drugs (PWUD) are highly stigmatized and discriminated against and are often unable to access HIV services for fear of arrest or harassment. 

The AIDS epidemic is changing: In 2018, more than half of all new HIV infections were among key populations — sex workers, people who inject drugs, gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender people and people in prisons — and their sexual partners.

People who inject drugs accounted for an estimated 12% of global infections, including 41% of new HIV infections in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, 37% of new infections in the Middle East and North Africa, and 13% in Asia and the Pacific.

What we do:

Supporting the revision, adaptation, development and implementation of effective legislation, policies and strategies

UNODC engages national key partners and PWUD community-based organizations to identify best practices and determine how national policies can be strengthened to ensure that the right to health for PWUD is protected and respected.

Development and dissemination of normative guidance on HIV

UNODC together with the International Network of people who Use drugs (INPUD) and other UN partners developed the tool “Implementing Comprehensive HIV and HCV Programmes with People Who Inject Drugs: Practical Guidance for Collaborative Interventions" (the "IDUIT") which is offering practical advice on implementing evidence-based and human rights based HIV programmes for and with PWUD.

Capacity building

Subsequently, a training package was developed to be used and adapted at country level.

Capacity building programs are conducted at country level to increase the capability of service providers and community-based organizations to implement HIV prevention, treatment and care programmes for and with people who inject drugs and to sensitize decision makers, and national authorities on the importance of engaging and supporting community-based organizations in the HIV response.

Technical assistance

UNODC supports the development and implementation of comprehensive evidence-based interventions for HIV prevention, treatment and care.


UNODC promotes human rights-based, gender responsive, public health-centered and evidence-based approaches, elimination of stigma, discrimination and violence.