Survey: Women Want Information on PrEP

Many women are unaware of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) but show a keen interest in spreading the word once they learn about the option, according a recent study in the journal Contraception.

Many women are unaware of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) but show a keen interest in spreading the word once they learn about the option, according a recent study in the journal Contraception.

The study included 500 women at 4 family planning clinics in Atlanta, and included an HIV risk screener before the patients visited with a provider, followed by questions about their counseling afterward.

According to the study, 18% of women surveyed knew about PrEP and 28% of the 376 who were sexually active had a risk indicator placing them within the recommended range for PrEP. Georgia ranks 3rd highest for lifetime HIV risk, the study noted, adding that 56% of women diagnosed in 2015 were living in the south.

Prevention has focused largely on condom use, which women aren't always in control of, according to Jessica M. Sales, PhD, associate professor at the Rollins School of Public Health and Emory University and an investigator on the study.

Family planning providers are important for scaling uptake of PrEP among women. Survey participants provided input for how they would like to learn about PrEP, with 150 participants suggesting that clinics distribute materials such as brochures, posters, and emails; 134 suggesting providers should speak directly with patients about PrEP; 71 saying information should be spread broadly in the community; and 11 wanting better access to PrEP.

A version of this article was originally published by our sister publication, Contagion. Visit ContagionLive.com to view the full article.