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Reykjavik

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OVERVIEW

For many years, Iceland has been ranked as the most "gender-equal" country in the world. According to a 2018 report by the World Economic Forum, Iceland had closed 85% of its overall gender gap.[1]

Contraception (Birth Control)[edit | edit source]

General Note: There are many types of contraceptives, also known as "birth control," including IUDs, oral contraceptives, patches, shots, and condoms, etc. If you would like to view a full list, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Iceland, you can purchase condoms without a prescription at pharmacies. However, you need a prescription to obtain most other forms of contraception, such as birth control pills, implants, injectables, and IUDs.[2] [3]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Emergency Contraception (Morning after Pill)[edit | edit source]

Important Notes: Emergency contraception may prevent pregnancy for three days (72 hours) and sometimes five days (120 hours) after unprotected sex. Take EC as soon as possible after unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy. If you don't have access to dedicated EC, oral contraceptives can be used as replacement EC, but remember the following: 1) Only some contraceptives work as EC 2) Different contraceptives require different dosages and time schedules to work as EC 3) You must only use the first 21 pills in 28-day packs and 4) They may be less effective than dedicated EC. For general information on emergency contraceptives, click here and here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Iceland, emergency contraceptive pills (morning after pills) are available over-the-counter at pharmacies. No prescription is required.[4]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

  • You can find emergency contraceptive pills (morning after pills) at pharmacies, and they are sold over-the-counter. One brand you may find at pharmacies is Postinor 1.5.[5]
  • Note: The longest-lasting EC is currently ellaOne. It lasts up to 5 days (120 hours) after unprotected sex. Check to see if your country carries ellaOne. If your country doesn't carry ellaOne, copper IUDs may also prevent pregnancy up to 5 days after unprotected sex. If none of these options are available, and it's been over 3 days since you had unprotected sex, you can still take EC, which may work up to 5 days. Note that EC pills are not 100% effective and should be taken as soon as possible.

Costs[edit | edit source]

One traveler reported that emergency contraception in Iceland cost the equivalent of $18 USD in January 2017.

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs/STDs)[edit | edit source]

Important Notes - Learn about PEP and PrEP: If you think that you've been recently exposed to HIV (i.e. within 72 hours), seek out PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis). It's a month-long treatment to prevent HIV infection after exposure, and it may be available in your city. Take PEP as soon as possible. For more information, click here. If you are at risk of HIV exposure, seek out PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis). It's a daily oral pill that can prevent HIV infection before exposure. To learn more about PrEP, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Iceland, there are no known travel or residency restrictions for people with HIV/AIDS. This means that you can enter the country, regardless of your HIV status, and you should not be deported if you test positive for HIV while you are in the country.[6]

It is difficult to find recent data on HIV rates in Iceland. There are no rates available from UNAIDS or the CIA World Factbook (as of March 2019) However, we do know that 24 people were diagnosed with HIV in 2015, and 13 people were diagnosed in 2013. While these rates are low, they do show an increase in diagnoses.[7] Furthermore, in 2017, it was estimated that about 230 were on ART, according to UNAIDS.[8]

There are protocols and rules in place for HIV testing. Anyone can get an HIV tests, and these tests are free. Pregnant women are offered HIV tests during their pregnancy, but nobody will be tested to tests against their will. You can receive an HIV test at any doctor's office, and the test results will be confidential.[9]

You can read a personal account of getting an STI test here.

Testing Facilities[edit | edit source]

  • Health care centres in Iceland
  • Department for Skin Disease and Sexually Transmitted Diseases: LandspitaliHaskolasjukrahus (LSH), Þverholt 18, 105 Reykjavik, telephone: 5436050 (By appointment)
  • Outpatient ward for infectious diseases LSH, Fossvogur, 108 Reykjavik, telephone: 543 2040 (By appointment)
  • LSH Laboratory, Fossvogur, telephone: 543 5600. You can get a test without an appointment, any weekday between 8:00 and 18:00 hours.

Support[edit | edit source]

  • HIV Iceland - Alnæmissamtökin à Islandi: This organization, established in 1988, provides services, resources, and support related to HIV in Iceland. Mailing Address: P. O. Box 5238, Hverfisgata 69, 101 Reykjavík. Phone: +354 552 8586. Fax: +354 552 0582. Email: hiv-island@hiv-island.is
  • Göngudeild smitsjúkdómar (ambulant care, free of charge): Doctor in charge: Már Kristjánsson, Sjúkrahús Reykjavíkur, Fossvogi, 108, Reykjavk. Phone: +354 525 1000. Fax: +354 525 1025
  • Smitsjúkdómardeild Landspitalans: Doctor in charge: Sigurður B. Þorsteinsson, Hringbraut, 101 Reykjavík, Phone: +354 560 1000
  • Göngudeild Smitsjúkdómar (ambulant care): Barnaspítali Hringsins (Children department of the National Hospital), Doctors in charge: Gestur Pálsson and Þórolfur Guðnason, Phone: +354 560 1052, Fax: +354 560 1055

Costs[edit | edit source]

  • Anyone can get HIV tests in Iceland, and they are free to charge.[9]
  • In the summer of 2018, the Icelandic Medicine Pricing and Reimbursement Committee approved to subsidize costs for Emtricitabine/​Tenofovir disoproxil Krka for people with HIV.[10]

Medications & Vaccines[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

  • You can obtain the HPV vaccination in Iceland. There has been a nationwide vaccination program since 2011.[11]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Menstruation[edit | edit source]

Note: In addition to pads and tampons, you can also use menstrual cups and menstrual underwear for your period. To learn more about menstrual cups, click here. To learn more about menstrual underwear, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

  • You can find menstrual cups sold in select stores and pharmacies in Iceland. For example, in the Reykjavik area, you can find the Lunette cup sold at Vistvera and Heilsutorg Blómavals.[12] You can also find Organicup sold at many pharmacies.[13]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Gynecological Exams[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

  • Dr. Svanhvít Hekla Ólafsdóttir: "The most recommended gyno in all the foreigner’s groups and among my Icelandic and immigrant friends is Svanhvít Hekla at Domus Medica." - Reykjavik, May 2019

Costs[edit | edit source]

Pregnancy[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Iceland, parents are entitled to 13 weeks of unpaid maternity or paternity leave.[14] Reports state that Iceland lags behind other Nordic countries in providing comprehensive parental leave.[15]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Abortion[edit | edit source]

Important Note: There are two main types of abortions: medical (also known as the "abortion pill") and surgical (also known as "in-clinic"). For medical abortions, you take a pill to induce abortion. For surgical abortions, a procedure is performed to induce abortion. For general information about medical and surgical abortions, click here.

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

In Iceland, abortion has been legally available upon request since 1975. For people who are up to 16 weeks pregnant, they can legally obtain an abortion for any reason, including upon request. For people who are pregnant for more than 16 weeks, they can receive an abortion if the pregnancy threatens their life or health (physical or mental), or if there is severe risk of fetal malformation.[16] There is political interest in Iceland to extend the period of abortion upon request for up to 22 weeks of pregnancy.[17]

You can read the details of the 1975 law here.

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

LGBTQ Health[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

Costs[edit | edit source]

Advocacy & Counseling[edit | edit source]

Laws & Social Stigmas[edit | edit source]

What to Get & Where to Get It[edit | edit source]

  • For emergencies anywhere in Iceland, call 112.
  • For urgent after-hours primary care in Reykjavik, call 1770
  • Kvennaathvarfið: The Women’s Shelter. "Free individual counseling for survivors of rape, sexual molestation, sexual harassment, pornographic exploitation and prostitution. Service is for women and men. Services for children are offered by Children’s Protective Services (Barnahús). Teenagers under the age of 18 are welcome once a report has been filed with the Children’s Protective Services."
  • Rótin: The Root: Association on Women, Addiction and Mental Health. "The objectives of The Root are to promote public discussion on issues relating to women, addiction, mental health, trauma and violence, and to back up programs aimed specifically at the treatment of women with addiction related problems."

Costs[edit | edit source]

List of Additional Resources[edit | edit source]

Government Organizations[edit | edit source]

General Women's & Health Organizations[edit | edit source]

LGBTQ Resources[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]