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PrEP HIV prevention

Pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, is a way for people who do not have HIV but who are at substantial risk of getting it to prevent HIV infection by taking a pill every day. The pill (brand name Truvada) contains two medicines (tenofovir and emtricitabine) that are used in combination with other medicines to treat HIV.

Who can take PrEP

For sexual transmission

Anyone in an ongoing relationship with an HIV-Positive Partner; (For heterosexual couples where one partner has HIV and the other does not, PrEP is one of several options to protect the uninfected partner during conception and pregnancy.)

Gay or Bisexual Men who have had anal sex without a condom or been diagnosed with an STD in the past 6 months; and are not in a mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who recently tested HIV-negative

Heterosexual Men or Women who do not regularly use condoms during sex with partners of unknown HIV status who are at substantial risk of HIV infection (e.g., people who inject drugs or have bisexual male partners); and are not in a mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who recently tested HIV-negative

For people who inject drugs

Anyone who has injected illicit drugs in the past 6 months and who has shared injection equipment or been in drug treatment for injection drug use in the past 6 months.

Guidelines for physicians

The CDC provides comprehensive clinical information for the use of daily oral antiretroviral PrEP in the 2014 CDC PrEP clinical practice guidelines

Where to get PrEP

Snohomish Health District has identified providers who are knowledgeable about PrEP and have agreed to prescribe and follow clients who choose PrEP as an important HIV prevention tool. Please Reference our PrEP Provider List.

In addition, feel free to consult with your own primary care physician (PCP). Taking PrEP is prevention – so it is similar to screening and monitoring for other conditions, like diabetes or cardiovascular issues. Your doctor may not yet be familiar with PrEP and may need more information. The Centers for Disease Control has the latest information and provider guidance on PrEP at  http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/guidelines/preventing.html .

The Washington State PrEP Drug Assistance Program can help those who qualify pay for PrEP medications.

Getting Started-what to expect

Your provider will conduct a general physical; test for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections; and see if your kidneys and liver are working well. These tests will show whether PrEP medicines are safe for you to take.

Using PrEP means being able to take the drug every day and return to your provider every 3 months for prescription refills, follow-up blood tests, and to see if your body is reacting well to Truvada. It is important to take your medicine everyday as prescribed.

Truvada does not protect against other STIs, like Syphilis, Gonorrhea or Chlamydia. People who use PrEP will also need to use other prevention methods, such as condoms and new needles, to reduce the risk of infection of HIV or other STIs.

Resources

PrEP Fact Sheet (PDF)
Taking PrEP?  Information Sheet (PDF)
PrEP Links Online Resources (PDF)

PrEP providers in Snohomish County

The following providers are knowledgeable about PrEP and have agreed to prescribe and follow clients who choose to use PrEP as an important HIV prevention tool.  (Updated September 16, 2014)

PrEP providers in Snohomish County  (PDF)
 

PrEP providers Outside Snohomish County

The following providers are knowledgeable about PrEP and have agreed to prescribe and follow clients who choose to use PrEP as an important HIV prevention tool. (Updated December 19, 2014)

PrEP providers outside Snohomish County (PDF)