As we all know, HIV is probably one of the scariest sexually transmitted infections (STI). It’s a burden that no one should have to bear. It is a virus which commits carriers to a lifetime of self-medication, regular check-ups and restraint. In New Zealand, HIV is on the rise. When looking at the statistics, we see a 100% growth in the number of people being diagnosed with HIV, leaping from 120 people in 2015 to 244 people in 2016. This is saddening, to say the least. Not only should we fight harder but smarter, by working together and raising awareness…
In the words of Bill Clinton, “We live in a completely interdependent world, which simply means we cannot escape each other. How we respond to AIDS depends, in part, on whether we understand this interdependence. It is not someone else’s problem. This is everybody’s problem.”
So, aside from spreading awareness! What can individuals at risk of HIV do to prevent contraction? PrEP.
Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is an HIV prevention strategy where HIV-negative individuals can take anti-HIV medication. This medication is a combination of emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil. By taking these drugs, individuals who engage in high-risk activities can reduce their annual risk of infection to 0.04 percent. That’s a 4-in-10,000 odds. If you ask me, that’s pretty good. But you may be thinking, wait! What do you classify as being a high-risk activity? High-risk behaviour activities include: unprotected anal or vaginal sex, and the sharing of needles or syringes.
So, get checked up regularly! And remember, PrEP is a government subsidised drug, meaning it’s cheap and easily accessible. If you need a prescription or you would like to find out more about PrEP, feel free to get in contact with our team!
Did you know that many STI's don't have symptoms? If left untreated they can seriously damage your fertility, health and life.
If you’re unsure what to do or if you’re worried about an STI, we’re here to help with safe and easy tests you can do at home.
Don’t risk your health!
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