Task force advocates wider use of PrEP: 4 things to know

Anne-Marie Kommers - Print  | 

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that people at high risk of HIV take a daily dose of pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, according to NPR.

Four things to know:

1. Less than 10 percent of high-risk patients currently take a PrEP medication, which can protect people from contracting HIV. In 2017, the U.S. had over 38,000 new HIV diagnoses, according to the CDC.

2. The taskforce's recommendation will promote efforts to expand access to PrEP for high-risk patients, including those who inject drugs and have unprotected sex with potentially infected partners, two health experts wrote in an editorial published in JAMA.

3. The recommendation could also help expand insurance coverage of Truvada, a brand name PrEP medication, which has a list price of $21,360 a year per person.

4. The task force published its recommendation alongside an analysis of multiple studies involving PrEP’s safety and efficacy. They found most PrEP side effects were minimal and reversible for patients.

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