Sexual health and HIV prevention are often under-discussed and de-prioritized by both people who can benefit from PrEP (PWBP) as well as the healthcare community.
The reasons are multi-factorial and include provider discomfort, stigma among providers and PWBP, distrust of the healthcare system, societal norms related to sexual health discussions, personal beliefs, and competing priorities.
So how do we normalize sexual health and HIV prevention conversations? And more specifically, how do we better identify, educate, and support appropriate individuals who may benefit from proven HIV prevention options such as Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP)?
The CDC estimates that 1.2 million people in the US would benefit from PrEP. However, only 25% are currently using PrEP, with another 25% being people who stopped using PrEP, and the remaining 50% have never used PrEP. *
There are multiple reasons for poor PrEP uptake, including but not limited to lack of education and awareness, stigma and biases, and administrative barriers to access; and PrEP uptake is disproportionately low among specific populations including Black individuals and Hispanic/Latinx MSM.