PrEP Now available on the PBS
On 9 February 2018 the Pharmaceutical Benefit Advisory Committee (PBAC) recommended pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), a program that combines daily anti-retroviral medications with regular sexual health testing, be listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) — making this game changing HIV prevention tool accessible across Australia. Globally, PrEP has proved to be highly effective at preventing the acquisition of HIV and its addition to the PBS has been greatly anticipated by community and health professionals alike.
Announced by Minister Greg Hunt on 21 March 2018, PrEP will be added to the PBS this April 1 2018, and is expected to come in at under $40 a month or $6.40 for those with a concession, and to be dispensable from any pharmacy in Australia with a script from your GP, though it may take some time for some pharmacies to order in the initial medication.
In May 2016, the Therapeutic Goods Administration approved PrEP for use in Australia, but the drug remained expensive to acquire with many community members turning to personal importation minimise these costs. Meanwhile, demonstration trials launched across Australia to make PrEP available to those communities most at risk of acquiring HIV. These trials have played an important role in making PrEP accessible until it could be listed on the PBS, but with each state independently launching trials, access has been inconsistent nationally. It is hoped by advocates and services a like that the addition of PrEP to the PBS will alleviate many of these accessibility issues
For more information book an Appointment at Hyde Street Practice or SHine SA