WHO recommends HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis as a prevention option

From Internal Medicine News, 22 July 2014:

MELBOURNE – Men who have sex with men should consider pre-exposure prophylaxis with antiretroviral medications as an additional option to prevent HIV infection, according to the latest World Health Organization guidelines on HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and care in high-risk populations.

The guidelines, released at the 20th International AIDS Conference, also introduce a new recommendation on providing access to naloxone and instructions on its use for anyone likely to witness an opioid overdose in a friend or relative, as part of a broader harm-reduction effort.

These are the first WHO guidelines on HIV/AIDS that bring together advice on five key population groups: men who have sex with men, injection drug users, sex workers, transgender people, and people in prisons.

Dr. Rachel Baggaley, guidelines coordinator from the HIV department at WHO, said the latest UNAIDS estimates suggest up to 50% of new infections are occurring among these groups because they are not getting the services they need.

While the idea of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) among men who have sex with men was first raised 3 years ago, Dr. Baggaley said the evidence now justified a strengthening of the recommendation. Read more. 

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