Article

Early Experiences Implementing Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV Prevention in San Francisco

PLoS Medicine (Impact Factor: 14). 03/2014; 11(3):e1001613. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1001613
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Albert Liu and colleagues report early experiences with uptake and delivery of pre-exposure prophylaxis(PrEP)for HIV prevention in three different settings in San Francisco. PrEP can be an important component of a comprehensive HIV prevention program and can complement efforts to increase HIV testing, linkage to care, and early initiation of antiretroviral therapy. Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary.

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    ABSTRACT: Objectives To explore the acceptability of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) among gay, bisexual and men who have sex with men (MSM) and migrant African communities in Scotland, UK. Design Consecutive mixed qualitative methods consisting of focus groups (FGs) and in-depth interviews (IDIs) explored PrEP acceptability. Data were digitally recorded, transcribed and analysed thematically to identify anticipated and emerging themes. Setting Participants were recruited through community sexual health and outreach support services, and from non-sexual health settings across Scotland. Participants Inclusion criteria included identification as either MSM and/or from migrant African communities; 18 years and older; living in Scotland at the time of participation. 7 FGs were conducted (n=33): 5 with MSM (n=22) and 2 mixed-sex groups with African participants (n=11, women=8), aged 18–75 years. 34 IDIs were conducted with MSM (n=20) and African participants (n=14, women=10), aged 19–60 years. The sample included participants who were HIV-positive and HIV-negative or untested (HIV-positive FG participants, n=22; HIV-positive IDI participants, n=17). Results Understandings of PrEP effectiveness and concerns about maintaining regular adherence were identified as barriers to potential PrEP uptake and use. Low perception of HIV risk due to existing risk management strategies meant few participants saw themselves as PrEP candidates. Participants identified risk of other sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy as a concern which PrEP did not address for either themselves or their sexual partners. PrEP emerged as a contentious issue because of the potentially negative implications it had for HIV prevention. Many participants viewed PrEP as problematic because they perceived that others would stop using condoms if PrEP was to become available. Conclusions PrEP implementation needs to identify appropriate communication methods in the context of diverse HIV literacy; address risk-reduction concerns and; demonstrate how PrEP can be part of a safe and comprehensive risk management strategy.
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    ABSTRACT: This article presents an overview of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention. The authors describe the past animal and human research that has been conducted that informs our current understanding of PrEP; summarize ongoing research in the area, including describing new regimens and delivery mechanisms being studied for PrEP; and highlight key issues that must be addressed in order to implement and optimize the use of this HIV prevention tool. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a promising strategy for HIV prevention among men who have sex with men (MSM) and men who engage in sex work. But access will require routine HIV testing and contacts with healthcare providers. This study investigated men's healthcare and HIV testing experiences to inform PrEP implementation. Methods: We conducted 8 focus groups (n = 38) in 2012 and 56 in-depth qualitative interviews in 2013-14 with male sex workers (MSWs) (n = 31) and other MSM (n = 25) in Providence, RI. MSWs primarily met clients in street-based sex work venues. Facilitators asked participants about access to healthcare and HIV/STI testing, healthcare needs, and preferred PrEP providers. Results: MSWs primarily accessed care in emergency rooms (ERs), substance use clinics, correctional institutions, and walk-in clinics. Rates of HIV testing were high, but MSWs reported low access to other STI testing, low insurance coverage, and unmet healthcare needs including primary care, substance use treatment, and mental health services. MSM not engaging in sex work were more likely to report access to primary and specialist care. Rates of HIV testing among these MSM were slightly lower, but they reported more STI testing, more insurance coverage, and fewer unmet needs. Preferred PrEP providers for both groups included primary care physicians, infectious disease specialists, and psychiatrists. MSWs were also willing to access PrEP in substance use treatment and ER settings. Conclusions: PrEP outreach efforts for MSWs and other MSM should engage diverse providers in many settings, including mental health and substance use treatment, ERs, needle exchanges, correctional institutions, and HIV testing centers. Access to PrEP will require financial assistance, but can build on existing healthcare contacts for both populations.
    PLoS ONE 11/2014; 9(11):e112425. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0112425 · 3.53 Impact Factor

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May 17, 2014