In 2017, a total of 14 people were newly diagnosed with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection related to injecting drug use. This compares with 50 notifications among people who inject drugs (PWID) in 2015, which was the highest number since 2008 and was linked to an outbreak of HIV among homeless synthetic cathinone users in Dublin.
In 2016, more than one third of hepatitis C virus (HCV) cases were attributed to injecting drug use; however, information on the route of transmission was provided for less than half of all reported cases of HCV infection. Old age (older than 34 years), male gender and residence in Dublin or the surrounding counties were notable characteristics of PWID reported to be infected with HCV in Ireland.
With regard to hepatitis B virus (HBV) infections, a downward trend in the number of notifications was observed between 2008 and 2014; however, the most recent data suggest that the numbers of cases diagnosed and notified are stabilising. Of the 74 % of acute cases notified for which risk factor data were available, less than 5 % were likely to have been acquired through injecting drugs.