NPHC Urges to Get Tested for HIV, Hepatitis and Sexually Transmitted Infections


2023 11 20


The National Public Health Centre under the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Lithuania (NPHC) is joining the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control campaign to mark the European Testing Week, and is inviting everyone to get tested for HIV, viral hepatitis B and C, and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) on 20-27 November. NPHC experts are urging people to assess their risk of the infections and reminding them of the testing options available in Lithuania as well as who is most recommended to get tested.

Epidemiological situation

In 2022, there were 39 million people living with STIs worldwide, including 1.5 million children under the age of 14 years. Throughout the history of HIV from the first reported case in 1981 until 2022, approximately 40.4 million people worldwide died of AIDS-related illnesses.

In Lithuania, 252 new cases of HIV were registered last year, and a total of 3,835 cases over the entire HIV history (1988-2022). Between 2018 and 2022, 85 people living with HIV died of AIDS.

"HIV, viral hepatitis B and C, and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) may not show any symptoms, but continue to progress or cause complications. In addition, people with these infections can infect others without even knowing it. Therefore, it is recommended that everyone should assess the risks of transmission and seek testing," - says Kęstutis Rudaitis, Chief Specialist of the Communicable Disease Management Division at the NHSC.

Who should get tested

Testing for HIV, viral hepatitis B and C and STIs ir recommended especially for:

•    persons who have had sex with someone infected with HIV or other sexually transmitted infections;
•    persons with casual sexual partners;
•    sex workers;
•    men who have sex with men;
•    persons who used and are using narcotic and psychotropic substances;
•    pregnant women;
•    persons with clinical (STI) symptoms.

It is recommended that everyone should be tested for these infections at least once in their lifetime, and at least once a year for those at higher risk, as well as at the onset of clinical symptoms of STIs.

What you should know about testing

To find out if you are infected with HIV, viral hepatitis B and C or STIs, you need to undergo laboratory tests or do a rapid test.

  • You can get tested for HIV anonymously and free of charge by taking a rapid HIV test at NGOs and low-threshold clinics. For a list of facilities where you can get tested for HIV, click here.
  • Free testing for hepatitis C virus infection is available to all the residents of the country born between 1945 and 1994 whether they belong to at-risk group, or not. for more information on free hepatitis C screening one should consult theirfamily doctor.   
  • Some STIs may have no symptoms and are diagnosed and treated by specialists using specific tests.
  • Testing can be done by self-testing with rapid tests. Rapid self-tests are available in pharmacies and online shops.