What is PrEP?
PrEP (Pre-exposure Prophylaxis) is a daily medicine that helps prevent HIV for those who may be exposed to HIV.
Does it Work?
PrEP is about 92% effective in preventing HIV during sexual contact and 74% effective at preventing HIV among people who inject drugs.
Is PrEP for Me?
If you have a higher risk of exposure to HIV, PrEP might be for you! Your health is in your hands.
PrEP can benefit anyone at greater risk of acquiring HIV, including...
- Women (including women of the transgender experience)
- Men (including men of the transgender experience)
- Persons of intersex experience
- Persons who identify as straight/heterosexual
- Persons who identify as gay/homosexual
- Anyone along the sexuality spectrum
HIV is a human virus. It does not target any specific population.
How PrEP Protects You From HIV
T-Cells are white blood cells that help your immune system fight off viruses that enter your body.
When you are exposed to HIV, the HIV virus invades your T-Cells. It multiplies and attacks more and more T-Cells, killing them and preventing your body from fighting off illness.
Taking one PrEP pill a day builds a protective shield around your T-Cells. If you are exposed to the HIV virus, this shield stops the virus from entering your cells.
PrEP should be taken daily, as prescribed, by those who are sexually active or sharing injection drug equipment. PrEP is only necessary if you have an increased risk of exposure to HIV.
Is PrEP for Me?
If you agree with any of these statements, PrEP might be right for you!
- I am having sex with someone who is HIV positive
- I recently had a sexually transmitted infection
- I have anal sex without condoms
- I have vaginal sex without condoms
- I exchange sex for drugs, food, money, or housing
- I have sex while intoxicated or high
- I use injection drugs and share needles with others
- I have sex with mutliple partners
Who We Are
A message from our Medical Director
Dr. Marwan Haddad
We are on the verge of ending the HIV epidemic. We have all the tools we need to end new transmissions. The goal is a 75% reduction in transmissions in 5 years and 90% reduction by the year 2030. In addition to the well-known prevention tools (condom use, syringe exchange programs, post-exposure prophylaxis, to name a few), there are two transformative evidence-based initiatives that we need to make sure the world knows about and that we need to scale up rapidly and effectively: U=U and PrEP.
U=U stands for Undetectable = Untransmittable. This is the scientifically proven fact that if an individual living with HIV is on treatment and achieves a viral level in the blood that is undetectable, they cannot transmit the virus sexually to any of their partners, even without the use of condoms. This has been proven whether you are gay or straight and whether you identify as man, woman, transgender, or non-binary.
In addition to this, according to the National Institutes of Health, if an HIV-negative individual at risk for HIV takes PrEP, it reduces their risk of acquiring HIV by 99%, regardless of condom use.
Having a persistently, undetectable HIV virus affords those individuals living with HIV a healthy, normal life span comparable to those who are HIV negative.
We still have a lot of work ahead of us. We need to be able to get everyone tested so that those who are living with HIV are aware of their status. We need to engage those living with HIV and provide them care. We need to support them in starting and staying on effective HIV treatment. Those who test HIV negative but continue to be at risk should be offered and started on PrEP and helped to stay on PrEP as long as they continue to be at risk.
We need to fight the stigma and discrimination surrounding HIV as well as surrounding sexual orientation, gender identity, drug use, and racial and ethnic minorities. We need to create welcoming, open, nonjudgmental environments and foster attitudes that are respectful and caring towards all individuals. People must feel safe and supported and cared for.
Let us all take an oath together, that in our generation, we will bring an end to the HIV epidemic!
Our PrEP Navigator
Nicole Morgan, LPN
Meet Nicole Morgan, our PrEP Navigator! Nicole will be able to help you learn more about PrEP, schedule your appointment, and access financial assistance if you need. Contact her at (860) 347-6971 ext. 3658 or via email here.