HRC Endorses PrEP in the Prevention of HIV


This weekend the Human Rights Campaign released a statement endorsing Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), an HIV-prevention strategy that involves taking antiretroviral drugs like Truvada.

To help stem the tide and stop the epidemic in its tracks, HRC is endorsing PrEP—an HIV prevention strategy that includes taking anti-HIV medication to significantly reduce the risk of contracting HIV.  Specifically, HRC is explicitly endorsing the use of Truvada, the only brand name anti-HIV drug combination currently approved for PrEP.

When taken as prescribed by a knowledgeable healthcare provider, and paired with other safer sex practices, Truvada can reduce the risk of contracting HIV by upwards of 90 percent.

It is important to note that HRC’s recommendation applies especially to populations deemed most vulnerable to HIV infection. Truvada is not right for all individuals, and any medical decision should be made in concert with a knowledgeable healthcare provider.

It is also important to understand that Truvada does not provide protection against other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). With STDs such as syphilis on the rise, and with their capacity to lead to life-threatening conditions if untreated, it’s essential for sexually active individuals to protect themselves and always engage in safer sex practices and get tested regularly.

This comes on the heels of a British study revealing that PrEP is “highly protective” against HIV—particularly for gay men, other men who have sex with men and transgender women. A press release from Clinical Trials Unit of Public Health England—the organization that conducted the study—says that results show “a major step forward toward the control of HIV transmission in gay men in the U.K. … It shows that PrEP is highly effective at protecting against HIV, and is an exciting opportunity to engage men most at risk of HIV and turn the tide on the spread of this infection.”

There are a number of Philly HIV organizations that recommend and administer PrEP drugs. Philly FIGHT’s “I AM” men’s health project, for one, is a free program that educates HIV-negative gay/bisexual men on the usage of PrEP. Those who attend receive a one-week supply of Truvada, which is given out under medical supervision in FIGHT’s Jonathan Lax Center. For more information, contact the center at 215-985-4448.