New Studies Show PrEP “Extraordinarily Effective” in HIV Prevention

The Human Rights Campaign is speaking out about early results of two new studies that show using Truvada for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is “proving extraordinarily effective in reducing the risk of contracting HIV.”

Findings for the studies were released at the 2015 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in Seattle. The first, called The PROUD Study, “assesses the effect the use of PrEP has on the frequency with which men have sex, how often they use condoms, and whether they contract other sexually-transmitted infections.” The other, called the IPERGAY Study “examines whether Truvada is still effective as a preventative when taken “on demand,” which is defined as taking the pill two to 24 hours before sexual intercourse and again after, as opposed to daily.” The results:

  • “The two-year PROUD study in England, which involved gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men, shows daily use of PrEP reduced the risk of HIV infection by 86 percent. PROUD researchers last month announced that, given the effectiveness of daily anti-HIV drug treatment, they saw no need to pursue plans to continue and expand the study.”

  • “The IPERGAY study, conducted at six sites in France and one in Canada, shows that “on-demand” use of PrEP also reduced risk of HIV transmission by 86 percent, and should be incorporated into prevention efforts that already include counseling and condoms.”

Given these results, the HRC reiterates its previous endorsement of using PrEP as a means of HIV prevention.  “These findings confirm the unprecedented promise of PrEP—the promise of a real chance to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic through aggressive prevention of new HIV infections,” Vice President and Chief Foundation Officer at HRC Jeff Krehely said in a press release. “Hopefully, studies like these will continue to demonstrate that the medical community must embrace these life-changing regimens, and that affordable access to PrEP by those most vulnerable to HIV infection must be a priority.”

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.