From Today, HIV Prevention Drugs Are Free

Pre-exposure prophylaxis is recommended for sex workers, gay and bisexual men, and tourists who have sex in countries with an increased risk of HIV infection – for example, in Russia or Thailand.

From now on, drugs for the prevention of HIV infection are provided to the residents of Finland free of charge. These drugs are also known as Prep (pre-exposure prophylaxis) or PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis). Yle News covered them in detail in February, when it became known that they will be free of charge.

HIV prevention drug will become free in July – it is recommended for sex tourists visiting Russia and Thailand

Subject to of the rules for taking PrEP gives almost one hundred percent protection against HIV. In many European countries, these drugs are included in the national program and are free of charge for risk groups.

According to Hivpoint’s estimates, Prep admits about 600 people in Finland – the majority in the Helsinki and Uusimaa Medical District. Until now, they have been paying 50-60 euros per month for the medicine. Now it will be free for them, and the drug can be obtained by those who could not afford it for financial reasons.

PrEP prescription is obtained from a specialist doctor who assesses the situation and the need for the drug. The condition is an increased risk of contracting HIV. This primarily applies to sex workers, homosexual and bisexual men, tourists who have sex in countries with a high risk of infection, such as Thailand and Russia, as well as anyone who has casual sex without a condom.

At the same time, having HIV in a partner does not require PrEP. If an HIV-infected person is on antiretroviral therapy, they cannot transmit the virus even through unprotected sex.