The HIV epidemic in the European Union and European Economic Area shows one persistent trend: almost every second person diagnosed with HIV is a so-called late presenter in an advanced stage of HIV infection when their immune system already starts to fail.
This high proportion of late diagnoses observed during the last decade suggests problems with access to, and uptake of, HIV testing and counselling in many countries.
Providing antiretroviral therapy at the early stages of HIV infection allows people with HIV to live longer and healthier lives, and reduces the risk of transmitting HIV to others.
A quick and simple blood test will tell if one is infected or not – knowledge that can help protect their own health and that of others.
Why is testing important?
- There is no cure for HIV but early diagnosis allows access to lifesaving treatment. At the same time, effective treatment leads to an undetectable viral load and this practically eliminates the risk of transmitting HIV further
- Early diagnosis prolongs healthy life and reduces cost to the healthcare system;
- To protect partners and unborn children: HIV transmission can be prevented once status is known.
Where to test?
With the European Test Finder, it only takes a few seconds to locate a testing site near you.
More on HIV testing
World AIDS Day 2017
1 Dec 2017 to 1 Dec 2017 - One in 2 people living with HIV are diagnosed late in the course of their infection. So late, that two out of three people with AIDS in the EU/EEA receive their diagnosis within only three months of discovering they had HIV. For World AIDS Day 2017, ECDC highlights the problem of late diagnosis and the need for diversifying HIV testing approaches.
Thematic report: HIV testing
25 Apr 2017 - This report summarises key issues related to HIV testing in Europe, focusing on the EU/EEA, and identifies priority actions to improve testing rates.
Reversing the HIV epidemic: Europe needs to scale-up prevention, testing and treatment
31 Jan 2017 - In a two-day conference organised in collaboration between the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union Conference and ECDC , HIV experts from across the European Union discussed how to reverse the HIV epidemic and how to prepare Europe to achieve the set target of ending AIDS by 2030.
Novel approaches to testing for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV and hepatitis B and C in Europe
7 Nov 2012 - This report focuses on novel approaches to testing for sexually transmitted infections, human immunodeficiency virus, hepatitis B virus and hepatitis C virus that are relevant for the prevention and control of these infections at EU/EEA level.