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Table INF-2. Prevalence of HCV antibody among injecting drug users in the EU countries, Croatia, Turkey and Norway, 2009 or most recent year available — Summary table by country

Country or region% Infected (1)
YearNumber testedNational samplesSub-national samplesStudy design (2) Setting/comments (2) (3) (4) (5)References
Belgium2009391:30.4 - 80.9DTLTS, DTC; serum22 ; 25 ; 99
Bulgaria2009955:61.2DTDTC, NSP, LTS, HTC; serum6 ; 7a ; 7b
Czech Republic200935322.4:DTNSP, LTS; serum, saliva, capillary blood25 ; 27
Denmark200822352.5:SP (UAT)ODD, 3 sites; post mortem blood; IDUnk7
Germany20041134:75.0n.a.Vacination study; serum, IDUnk24
Greece2009188343.5-64.318.2 - 75.6DT ; SPDTC, LTS, OHC, PHL, PRI;OTH serum1 ; 2 ; 9 ; 18
France2006362:41.7SP (UAT)NSP, LTS, STR; saliva21
Italy20097177758.536.8 - 80.7DTDTC, 533 sites; serum; IDUnk47 ; 48a ; 48b
Cyprus200911646.6:DTDTC, PRI; serum8 ; 9 ; 10
Latvia2007406:74.4SP (UAT)NSP; serum12
Lithuania2006775:70.3–89.7DTLTS, HTC, 17 sites; serum, dried blood spots; IDUnk 5 ; 8
Luxembourg200553671.8–90.7:SPDTC, NSP, LTS, STI, ANT, OHC, PRI; serum6
Hungary200989824.47.9 - 51.4SPNSP, DTC, PRI ; dried blood spots, serum19 ; 20a ; 20b
Malta200912130.6:DTDTC, STI, HTC,2 site; serum3 ; 5 ; 7
Netherlands200935:54.3SPDTC, LTS, 4 sites; serum34
Austria200985044.7 - 54.733.3 - 69.9DTDTC, LTS, ODD, NSP; serum2 ; 3 ; 4 ; 5 ; 12
Poland2009184:44.3 - 72.4SPLTS,2 sites; serum12
Portugal2009620528.7 - 83.1:DTDTC ; serum, dried blood spots; IDUnk §29 ; 30
Romania2009449:82.9SP (UAT)STR, 1 site; dried blood spots7
Slovenia200940123.4:DTDTC, 18 sites; serum5
Slovakia200998:50.0SPDTC, 1 site ; serum12
Finland2009682:60.5SP (UAT)NSP,9 sites; saliva. Current IDUs8
Sweden2009159:59.7DTPRI; serum13
United Kingdom20093289:26.1 - 54.0SP (UAT)DTC, NSP, LTS, primary care,60 sites; dried blood spots,saliva51 ; 53 ; 56
Croatia2007-0879144.027.1 - 65.3SPPRI, DTC, NSP, LTS, PHL, HTC; serum1
Norway2009415172.964.8SPNSP, LTS, DTC, 24 sites; serum12 ; 16 ; 18 ; 19 ; 20 ; 21


 This summary table gives a global overview of the prevalence of HCV antibody in IDUs in the EU, 2009 or most recent year available. Data for more than one year are combined if they clearly improve generalisability (e.g. national data, out-of-treatment data). Prevalence in this table should not be compared with previous versions to follow changes over time, as inclusion of sources may vary according to data availability. For time trends see Tables Table INF-111, INF-112 and INF-113

 (1) The figures show estimates (or range of estimates) from National and/or sub-national level samples. 

 (2) Saliva tests for hepatitis C antibodies underestimate prevalence. If test sensitivity is known then figures can be adjusted upwards by dividing prevalence by test sensitivity. Test sensitivity is around 70–90 % in older studies and may be up to 90-95% in some recent studies. Figures have not been adjusted. 

 DT: Diagnostic testing; SP: Seroprevalence study; SP-UAT: Seroprevalence study with unlinked anonymous testing; RDS: Respondent-driven sampling; SR: Data (partly) based on self reported test results. 

 (3) Having health problems is one selection criterion for admission to drug treatment in some countries or cities (Greece, Portugal, Rome), due to long waiting lists or special programmes for infected IDUs, and this may result in upward bias of prevalence. Prevalence from treatment data should therefore be interpreted in combination with non-treatment data. On the other hand, data from Italy and Portugal include non-IDUs and may thus underestimate prevalence in IDUs.  

 (4) § IDUnk = IDU status not known, prevalence in IDUs is likely to be underestimated. 

 (5) ODD = Overdose Deaths; DEM = Drug Emergencies; DTC = Drug Treatment Centres; NSP = Needle Exchanges; LTS = Low-Threshold Services; PHL = Public Health Laboratories; STI = STI Clinics; ANT = Antenatal Clinics; OHC = Other Hospital or Clinics; PRI = Prisons; ARR = Arrests; GPS = General Practitioners; HTC = HIV Testing Centres; STR = Street; OTH = Other. 

 Lithuania: One of the three studies avaliable is IDUnk (Subnational: N=457; 72.3 % infected). 

 Portugal: Two of three studies are IDUnk (All National: N=1562; 28.7% infected and N=3748; 39.9% infected)               


 See Table INF-111

 For references see Table INF-0. Bibliographic References-Part A: References for prevalence data     

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Page last updated: Monday, 04 July 2011