New campaign: Get PEP
'Get PEP' is a new nation-wide campaign, produced by the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO), that aims to increase gay men's knowledge and awareness of PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis).
PEP is a month-long course of HIV treatments that can prevent a person becoming infected with HIV after a recent exposure. The sooner someone starts PEP the better, but it needs to be within 72 hours of exposure.
PEP is different to PrEP. PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis) is taken after a possible exposure to HIV, whereas PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) is a drug taken daily over a sustained period to help prevent HIV infection before exposure.
PEP can be an effective HIV prevention tool after a high-risk event, such as condomless sex, sex where a condom breaks, and sharing injecting equipment.
It is available from the Emergency Department of most public hospitals, sexual health clinics and some other clinics and doctors that specialise in gay men's health and HIV. However, research shows that many men don't know that PEP is available.
'Get PEP' is based around the website www.getpep.info. It provides a range of information about PEP, including what it is and how it works, as well as tips for people accessing it and for when they're taking it.
Importantly, the website also provides the locations people can access PEP, including map search functionality, as well as PEP information lines for people to call for information and referrals.
AFAO President, Bridget Haire, points out why this campaign is needed.
'PEP is an effective HIV prevention method, and we need to make sure that those at risk of HIV can access it. Gay men in particular need to know about PEP - how it works, and where they can access it.
'It is vital that people are informed about all of the HIV prevention tools available to them, including PEP.'
The campaign will be promoted through a range of advertisements and materials such as posters and cards.
For more information, go to: www.getpep.info.
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This page was published on 08 February, 2016
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