Ireland: Many still unaware anti-HIV drug now available

A significant percentage of Ireland’s gay community still do not realise that the Anti-HIV drug Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is available for purchase in the State with large numbers continuing to buy the drug online, research has shown.

While the vast majority of the Irish gay community know about the PrEP drug, which has been proven to reduce the risk of HIV infection by up to 90 per cent, one-third of those questioned in a recent survey admitted they did not know or were unsure whether the drug was available in Ireland.

The research, which was conducted by Gay Community News on behalf of Teva Pharmaceuticals Ireland, found that more than one-third of 24-30 year olds – a key target group for HIV reduction strategies – did not know PrEP was available in Ireland. Only 10 per cent of all respondents said they were currently using the drug. The survey was carried out among 622 respondents, 97 per cent of whom were male.

It also found that 57 per cent of respondents who used the drug were obtaining it from unregulated sources such as online websites. Others acquired the drug in pharmacies, STI clinics or a hospitals. Read more via Irish Times