The Cyprus National Addictions Authority (NAAC) said on Wednesday that there should be more opportunity for people to test for HIV and hepatitis A and B, as it aims to destigmatise the problematic situation people with drug addictions are experiencing in their lives.

In a statement release during the European Infectious Diseases Testing Week, which started on May 16 and will end on May 23, the NAAC stressed that everyone should know their status regarding infectious diseases, adding that people suffering from HIV, hepatitis A or B and sexually transmitted diseases have a longer life expectancy nowadays compared to the past.

It also said that people with hepatitis C can now expect to fully recover with targeted treatment.

“However, based on our data, 53.9 per cent of people who reported injecting drugs at least once in their lifetime, tested positive for hepatitis C,” NAAC said.

Finally, the organisation said its main aim is to increase the number of people able to have access to safe and confidential tests and consequent appropriate care.