Where does our data come from?

Sources for graphics

We only used official data for the infographics in this piece, however, when presenting updated statistics on HIV/AIDS in Russia the head of Russia’s Federal AIDS Center Vadim Pokrovsky often includes the caveat that about one in two people in Russia who have HIV are aware that they are infected. The infection is notoriously underreported in Russia and so many of the numbers for the Russian Federation are low estimates for the full extent of the epidemic. Russia has also stopped collaborating with several international health organizations on HIV/AIDS matters because of deteriorating relations with the west, which means for Russian data we could only use data released by federal agencies.

Deaths from HIV in Europe vs. Russia

The European data is from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Their 2017 annual report on HIV/AIDS Surveillance in Europe includes AIDS-related deaths through the end of 2016 in Table 24 on page 71.

The Russian data is from three sources: the Federal Center for HIV/AIDS, numbers cited by the head of the Federal Center for HIV/AIDS Vadim Pokrovsky in interviews, and Rospotrebnadzor, the federal agency in charge of consumer protection, working in conjunction with the Federal Center for HIV/AIDS.

For the 2007 and 2010 numbers we looked exclusively at reports from the Federal AIDS Center. Their data does not specify deaths from HIV/AIDS each year but shows the cumulative number of deaths each year from HIV/AIDS since counting began on a federal level. So for 2007, we subtracted the total amount of AIDS deaths by 2006 from the 2007 figure. For 2010, we subtracted the total deaths by 2009 from the 2010 figure. However after 2012, data from Federal AIDS Center is not reported as regularly. So for 2015 we subtracted the total number of deaths by 2014 published by the Center from the total number by 2015 given by Vadim Pokrovsky (head of the Federal Center) in an interview with a state news agency. For 2016, we subtracted Pokrovsky’s 2015 number from the total reported by the federal consumer protection agency Rospotrebnadzor for deaths by 2016.

HIV Treatment in Russia

The Russian SPID Center, a Moscow-based NGO specializing in HIV and AIDS, 2017 report “HIV in Russia in Numbers.” 908,425 represents the number of people living and registered at a government HIV/AIDS center.

What the Russian Government Spends on Fighting HIV

“It (Russia) plans to spend 40 billion roubles ($475.20 million) on fighting HIV/AIDs in 2016 [Vadim] Pokrovsky said 100 billion roubles was needed.” Reuters, January 2016.

Countries With the Most New HIV Infections

Michel Sidibe, Executive Director of UNAIDS, in an interview with the Russian newspaper Kommersant in January 2017.