Michigan residents can now receive free pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) under a new federal program available statewide through the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Qualified patients can receive PrEP through several popular pharmacies via the recently-launched “Ready, Set, PrEP” program.1 Through this national program, PrEP is available for individuals without prescription drug insurance coverage, who have been tested negative for HIV, and who have a prescription for PrEP.2 All medications are fully covered for qualifying participants; however, the costs of necessary clinic visits and lab tests may vary depending on an individual’s income.3

"Expanded access to PrEP medication is a key component in bringing us one step closer to ending the HIV epidemic in our state and across the United States," Joneigh Khaldun, MD, Michigan's chief medical executive and chief deputy for Health, said to ABC 12.1

Approximately 16,000 Michigan residents have HIV and state health officials estimate 30% of new cases involve exposure to someone who does not know they may have the virus.1 

PrEP medications are prescription drugs that patients can take once-daily to reduce their risk of acquiring HIV through sex. The “Ready, Set, PrEP” program’s website lists 2 FDA-approved medications for use as PrEP: emtricitabine (Descovy, Gilead Sciences, Inc) and tenofovir (Truvada, Gilead Sciences, Inc).2

Ready, Set, PrEP is a part of the Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America (EHE) initiative, which aims to reduce the number of new HIV infections in the United States by 75% in 5 years and by 90% in 10 years.3

As part of the Ready, Set, PrEP program, CVS Health, Walgreens, and Rite Aid have donated their dispensing services to the Department of Health and Human Services. Beginning no later than March 30, 2020, qualified patients can obtain PrEP medications at more than 21,000 combined CVS Health, Walgreens, and Rite Aid locations throughout 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands, or through mail order at no cost to the patient.3

From January to March 30, 2020, patients will be able to access PrEP medications through this program at thousands of participating pharmacies.3

Patients who are interested can call toll-free at 888-447-8410 or go online to GetYourPrep.com to find out how they can qualify for free doses.1

Reference
  1. HIV prevention medication free to some patients in Michigan. ABC 12. Published January 9, 2020. https://www.abc12.com/content/news/HIV-prevention-medication-free-to-some-patients-in-Michigan-56684888html. Accessed January 10, 2020.
  2. Ending the HIV Epidemic: Ready, Set, PrEP. Get Your Prep website. https://www.getyourprep.com/. Accessed January 10, 2020.
  3. Ready, Set, PrEP Expands Access to Medication to Prevent HIV [press release]. HHS website. Published December 3, 2019. https://www.hhs.gov/about/news/2019/12/03/ready-set-prep-expands-access-to-medication-to-prevent-hiv.html. Accessed January 10, 2020.
  4. Blank, Christine. Major Drug Store Chains Support HIV PrEP program. Drug Topics. Published December 27, 2019. https://www.drugtopics.com/latest/major-drug-store-chains-support-hiv-prep-program. Accessed January 10, 2020.