- Published on 13 December 2012
In recent years a significant increase in drug use has been noted (Jordan MoH, 2012; UNODC, 2011). Cannabis and stimulants are the main drugs of use in the country. Heroin is the most common drug of injection. In-patient and out-patient detoxification, particularly in the public sector, are the main drug treatment services. Counseling, psychotherapy and self-help groups, as well as compulsory treatment, are also provided.
Jordan has a low prevalence HIV epidemic. In an IBBS conducted in four cities in 2008, no PWIDs and FSWs were HIV positive and the prevalence was very low in MSMs (Jordan MoH, 2012). Up to the end of 2011, injection drug use has contributed to 2.4% of HIV epidemic (Jordan MoH, 2012). However, the IBBS study, as well as a KAP study in 2011 showed that sharing injection equipment and unsafe sex is quite frequent among PWIDs and their HIV knowledge is inadequate (Jordan MoH, 2012; Shahroury, 2011).
Jordan is starting the second NASP (2012-2016). Although PWIDs have been included as a key at risk population in the country’s plans, such as the GFATM Round 6 plan, key HIV prevention services, such as NSP and OST, have not been planned. However, community-based organizations (CBOs) have started HIV education and condom distribution for FSWs, MSMs and PWIDs. Around 1,300 PWIDs received these services in 2010-11 (Jordan MoH, 2012). VCT and ART are available mainly in Amman (Jordan MoH, 2012).
Overall, HIV has not received adequate national attention. HIV surveillance in at risk groups is weak and VCT is not widely available (Jordan MoH, 2012). As risk behaviors are common among PWIDs, the risk of an HIV epidemic is high among this group. Harm reduction strategies should be discussed clearly. In recent years, NGOs have been empowered to get to hard-to-reach people. This should be continued and reinforced.