Portugal Country Drug Report 2019

Drug-related infectious diseases

In Portugal, data on drug-related infectious diseases are available from drug treatment facilities and provide insights into some subgroups of drug users: (i) those demanding treatment for the first time at the public network of outpatient treatment facilities; (ii) those admitted to public detoxification treatment units or certified private detoxification units; and (iii) those in treatment in public or certified private therapeutic communities.

A decreasing trend in the number of notifications of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections linked to injecting drug use has been observed since the early 2000s in Portugal. In 2017, the proportion of new HIV notifications associated with injecting drug use was around 2 %.

Prevalence of HIV and HCV antibodies among people who inject drugs in Portugal (%)
  Region HCV HIV
Data from 2017.
National 81.5 13.4
Sub-national : :

In 2017, 13 % of drug users who had ever injected drugs and who were tested at outpatient treatment services were HIV positive.

Among injecting drug users admitted to treatment in 2017, the rate of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection was 81.5 %, with the prevalence of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection ranging between 3 % and 6 %.

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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.