HIV Prevention PrEP + PEP

HIV Testing

If you come to see us at the STI clinic you will be offered a HIV test. HIV testing has been part of the routine screen at the STI clinic for many years and we encourage people to take the test. It is a good idea to know your HIV status because then you can look after your own health by engaging in HIV care and you can prevent transmission of HIV to your sexual partner. Since the mid 1990s there have been huge advances made in the management of HIV such that with antiretroviral therapy we expect people to live healthily. If you think you have been at risk of HIV it is a good idea to have a test. You could be infected for a long time before you develop any symptoms of infection and at that stage your health may have been damaged by the virus or you may have passed on the virus to your sexual partner. Some people experience a "seroconversion" illness around the time they have become infected. Symptoms of a seroconversion illness include flu symptoms, sore throat and a rash.

Sometimes after you have had an initial negative test you may be advised to have a repeat test after the "Window period". The window period is the term used to describe the time between someone getting infected with HIV and developing a positive HIV test which can be up to 12 weeks.

PEP and PEPSE

Prophylaxis means 'a treatment that prevents something happening'. Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) is short-term antiretroviral treatment to reduce the likelihood of HIV infection after potential exposure, either occupationally or through sexual intercourse. PEP may prevent infection with HIV developing, 2 or 3 antiretroviral HIV drugs are taken for 28 days.

They must be started within 72 hours of possible exposure to HIV infection, if they are to have any chance of working - the sooner the better.

The GUIDe clinic provides a walk-in service for Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) assessment.The walk-in service for PEP assessment is
available between 9am-11am and 2pm-3:30pm Monday to Thursday and 9am-11am on Fridays. PEP must be accessed within 72
hours of possible HIV exposure. If it is not
possible to attend at one of these times within the 72 hours following possible
HIV exposure please attend the emergency department.

 

To be at risk of HIV you need to have had risky contact (e.g. penetrative sex, sharing a syringe) with a person who has HIV. If you are unsure of the HIV status of your contact it is helpful, but not always possible, to have their blood checked urgently to see if they have HIV, if they do not then HIV then PEP would not be necessary.

If you need PEP outside of The GUIDE Clinic opening hours then it is important to get an emergency 4-day supply of PEP from your local emergency department within 72 hours. Then come to The GUIDE Clinic at their next opening for further assessment and more PEP medication if deemed appropriate.

PrEP

PrEP stands for pre-exposure prophylaxis. PrEP is taken by HIV negative people before having sex (pre-exposure) and after sex, to prevent HIV (this is called prophylaxis).

PrEP is a combination tablet containing two drugs: tenofovir and emtricitabine.

PrEP has been shown in many studies to be safe and highly effective at preventing HIV. When taken correctly PrEP has been found to be about 99% effective.

PrEP is the newest HIV prevention tool available and is best used in combination with other HIV prevention measures.

If you decide to use PrEP, it is important to do this with support from a healthcare professional.

Plese see links below and ensure you carefully read the getprep link. NB You will be required to bring your PPSN number with you.

ww.sexualwellbeing.ie/getprep

http://www.sexualwellbeing.ie/

There are two PrEP clinics each week in the GUIDe Clinic,

Wednesday Afternoon and Thursday morning by appointment only.

Please see link on our home page to book on-line.

 

For Information on how to register for DPS card please see link below,

https://www2.hse.ie/services/drugs-payment-scheme/apply-for-a-drugs-payment-scheme-card.html



 

 

 

 

 

--We are currently CLOSED for STI Walk-ins. We are seeing a limited number of STI emergencies that have been given an advance appointment after referral. Patients who have HIV appointments for collection of their medication should attend at their appointment time. The number of patients that are allowed into the department is limited so we will be strictly observing appointment times. GUIDE clinic PrEP patients will be sent a new appointment and prescription in the post. For more information related to Coronavirus and visiting restrictions please visit www.stjames.ie/NewsBanner/Coronavirus/    --