Cyprus Country Drug Report 2018

Drug harms

Drug-related infectious diseases

In Cyprus, data on notifications of infectious diseases are provided by the Department of Infectious Diseases and the National Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Programme of the Ministry of Health, while other data on drug-related infectious diseases (DRID) are primarily obtained via the implementation of the DRID key indicator, that is, by monitoring DRID prevalence among patients in drug treatment. The number of people who inject drugs (PWID) with valid test results for DRID remains low. In 2016, less than one quarter of those entering drug treatment benefited from hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) testing. No on-site testing is offered in outpatient programmes.

Prevalence of HIV and HCV antibodies among people who inject drugs in Cyprus (%)
region HCV HIV
Year of data: 2016
National 43.3 1.5 -3.9
Sub-national : :

In 2016, slightly less than half of those tested were found to be positive for HCV, many of whom were non-Cypriots. The prevalence of HBV infection remains low among PWID.

The rate of new human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections related to drug injecting is estimated to be low compared with other European countries. One HIV-positive individual was identified in 2016 among the PWID who were tested, while eight treatment clients self-reported HIV-positive status.

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Drug-induced deaths and mortality

Drug-induced deaths are deaths that can be attributed directly to the use of illicit drugs (i.e. poisonings and overdoses).

In 2016, the Special Registry reported six drug-induced deaths in Cyprus, which is a similar figure to those for recent years. Four cases involved opioids (three of them involved oxycodone) and benzodiazepine was also found to be present in each case in the toxicological examination. In 2016, four victims were older than 30 years.

In Cyprus, the drug-induced mortality rate among adults (aged 15-64 years) was 10.34 deaths per million in 2016, which is below the most recent European average of 21.8 deaths per million.

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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.