The UK sexual health and HIV charity, Terrence Higgins Trust have launched a PrEP fund with the intention of providing the HIV prevention drug to those who find the cost prohibitive.
CEO of the HIV charity, Stephen Green, said that the Mags Portman PrEP Access Fund will assist them to “provide PrEP to those who can’t access limited NHS supply or afford it themselves.” He continued: “This fund will help stop people in England and Northern Ireland from acquiring HIV, and aims to address inequity in the access of PrEP until there is full access to it on the NHS. The fund highlights the inadequacy of the PrEP trial in England.”
ACT UP Dublin recently stated that in Ireland, the medication’s “relatively high cost of €60 to €90 for a 30 day supply keep it out of reach of many who could benefit,” a fact which is similar in tone to challenges faced in the UK.
People in the UK who wish to be considered as suitable for the PrEP Access Fund will need to prove they are in receipt of benefits and so cannot financially afford the cost of the medication.
Discussing the PrEP fund, Dr Mags Portman, the person for whom it is named, stated: “PrEP is a vital tool in combination prevention, and working towards completely ending HIV transmission in the UK. This is something that is within our grasp and, as charities like Terrence Higgins Trust continue to work with partners and stakeholders in the sector, will soon be a reality.”
In Ireland, the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) is working on the introduction of a PrEP programme for populations at substantial risk of sexual acquisition of HIV. They are currently undertaking a Health Technology Assessment with the aim to establish the clinical- and cost-effectiveness of providing a PrEP programme in Ireland.
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