Researchers propose a new way to assess medication-based HIV prevention

February 15, 2017
Credit: Alec Tributino/The Miriam Hospital

News from Brown, February 15, 2017

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — One of the most promising new approaches to slowing the spread of HIV is pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), a once-a-day medication that people who don’t have HIV can take to prevent becoming infected. But that strategy only works if people at risk for contracting HIV become and remain fully engaged in preventive care and actually take the pills. In the real world of clinical practice, that has often proved tricky.

In a new article in the journal AIDS, a Brown University-based team of researchers draws on their experience in providing and carefully studying PrEP programs to propose a new system for understanding and evaluating how PrEP is implemented in clinical practice. By viewing the process as a continuum with nine specific steps, they write, researchers and clinical providers can properly assess where patients might fall out of preventive care that can help them remain HIV-negative. 

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