PrEP is treatment with medications that may prevent infection before being exposed to HIV. PrEP is not medication alone. The medication is taken daily after undergoing some laboratory testing for renal health (kidneys), laboratory screening for HIV, viral hepatitis and other STDs, medical assessment of a seropositive partner, if indicated, and a coordinated program of risk assessment, risk-reduction counseling, treatment adherence counseling and sexual health education. Persons taking PrEP should also continue to use other proven prevention strategies including condoms and safer sexual practices. The caregiver will also address other considerations for women of child-bearing age. PrEP may be provided through your local healthcare professional.
Watch the videos below to see how PrEP works!
*Disclaimer: PrEP reaches maximum protection from HIV for receptive anal sex at about 7 days of daily use. For all other activities, including insertive anal sex, vaginal sex, and injection drug use, PrEP reaches maximum protection at about 20 days of daily use. Read more at http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/basics/prep.html.
PEP is immediate treatment that may prevent infection after being exposed to HIV. This may include:
Unprotected sexual exposure with someone who is known to be HIV positive
Injuries like physical or sexual assault
Exposure through injection drug use or sharing equipment
A needle-stick injury or an exposure to blood, semen or vaginal fluid that gets into the bloodstream via a cut or open wound-sore or comes into contact with a mucous membrane (eyes, nose, mouth).
*PEP is considered a medical emergency and treatment must start within 72 hours of the exposure – ideally, within the first 24 hours. Do not delay! PEP treatment involves taking HIV medications for 28 days. For more information please contact the Florida Department of Health in Escambia office at 850-595-6345, your personal healthcare professional or your local Emergency Room for service after hours.