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ID: HR19-857

Presenting author: Vyacheslav Kushakov

Presenting author biography:

Vyacheslav (Slava) Kushakov is a founder and senior adviser at the Alliance for Public Health in Ukraine, involved in the development of classic and innovative harm reduction interventions in Ukraine and other countries, management of complex public health programmes, as well as the delivery of related technical assistance. Nightlife safety, sexual health and harm reduction programme for experimenting young people in Ukraine

Vyacheslav Kushakov, Galyna Sergiienko

In response to the growing club culture and recreational drug scene in Ukraine, in April 2018 the Alliance for Public Health (APH) with support from Elton John AIDS Foundation has launched online counselling services and nightlife safety activities for experimenting young people. The online resource contains online counselling on SRHR, substance use, interpersonal relations and mental health; risk screening test and references to recommended testing facilities; informative blog and FAQ section; interactive pages; Facebook page, Instagram and Telegram channels; interactive map of popular entertainment, health, sports and beauty locations; mobile application Free2Ask developed jointly with Fulcrum in order to improve access to online counselling services.

The resource already attracted 25,438 people, 683 of them have taken the HIV screening test and were referred to verified testing facilities. APH also introduced sexual health and harm reduction information and services at music festivals and night clubs and tested the model during 7 music festivals and youth events in the capital of Ukraine. In August 2018 we launched drug checking service using rapid qualitative and semi-quantitative tests during the Brave Factory and Rhythm Büro electronic music festivals in Kiev. Additionally, 1,011 people were tested for HIV, HBV, HCV and syphilis. 4 people with detected HCV were referred to treatment. The services are based on the concept of smart pleasure and cover a range of themes of interest to young people while introducing health related subjects such as safer substance use and harm reduction, sexual and reproductive health and rights, promotion of early detection and treatment of HIV and viral hepatitis, mental health, and safeguards from violence and human rights violations. These services will be further developed based on collected feedback from participants. APH is working to further improve drug checking service and develop a model of work with LGBT community practicing Chemsex.