Russia is the largest country in the world by land area, situated geographically in both Europe and Asia. The country has one of the fastest growing HIV epidemics in the world, with the number of people who are HIV+ having increased by 150% in the past decade.
Since 2016 the epidemic has been poised to move into the general population, a problem compounded by stigma and government indifference towards the disease. As a result of this rise, the country’s most at-risk groups are struggling to access healthcare. Sex work remains illegal and there is virtually no HIV prevention strategy or initiative aimed at supporting this group. In Moscow, more than 80% of sex workers are from outside the capital, and therefore not eligible to access state healthcare provision.
Our international network has established a project for Moscow sex workers, providing HIV screening and follow up services in the form of medical and counselling support. Medical support also covers gynaecological, sexual and reproductive health, and contraception. Additionally, we offer an advice service for people who are experiencing harassment or institutional violence.