Anyone who’s sexually active, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation, is at risk of contracting HIV. Thanks to decades of research and scientific advances in how we treat an HIV infection, people who are HIV-positive can now live long, healthy lives — but even though HIV is no longer a “death sentence,” HIV can still wreak havoc in a person’s life. There’s also still plenty of social stigma, stress, and financial burden associated with being HIV-positive.
It’s best to avoid becoming infected with HIV, and the only 100%-effective way to do that is to be on PrEP.
What is PrEP?
Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP – sometimes known by their brand names, Truvada and Descovy) is an antiretroviral medication that protects sexually active individuals from contracting HIV. After receiving a prescription for PrEP, you’ll take one pill orally each day. As the drug builds up in your bloodstream, it makes it impossible for HIV to infect you. PrEP is FDA-approved and safe for people of all ages.
Who can benefit from PrEP?
Anyone who’s sexually active is at risk of contracting HIV. A common belief is that only gay men are at risk of contracting HIV, but this simply isn’t true – anyone can contract HIV. If you’re sexually active and HIV-negative, PrEP is for you. PrEP will only work if you’re currently HIV negative. When you come in for your initial PrEP consultation, we’ll test you for HIV by drawing a sample of your blood and sending it to the laboratory for analysis.
How effective is PrEP?
PrEP is fully effective at preventing HIV infections, but only when taken on a daily basis as prescribed. If you miss a dose, the medication may not build up in your bloodstream the way it’s supposed to, which increases your risk of contracting HIV. Forgetting things is a normal part of life – but taking your PrEP pill every day is one of the most important things you can remember to do. If you have trouble remembering to take a daily medication, we recommend trying strategies like:
- Storing your PrEP bottle on the bathroom counter so that you see it first thing in the morning.
- Using a phone app to schedule a daily reminder.
- If you take multiple medications, using a pill organizer.
How much does PrEP cost? (Spoiler: You can get PrEP for free!
Although the cost of the medication is about $2,000 per month, we make PrEP available to anyone – always at no cost – through our creative programs and available resources.
Learn whether you qualify by calling our office at (407) 203-5984, texting our office at (407) 743-6957, or by contacting us through our website.
How do I get on PrEP?
To start PrEP you must be sexually active and HIV-negative. If you’re interested in learning more about PrEP, call us at (407) 203-5984 to ask us a question or to schedule your first appointment.