PrEP stands for ‘pre-exposure prophylaxis’. Put simply this means someone taking a HIV drug called Truvada to prevent them from becoming HIV positive.
The research that’s been done into this has shown that PrEP is very effective at preventing HIV transmission. However, PrEP is not yet available on the NHS and there is no indication as to when it might be.
PEP stands for ‘post exposure prophylaxis’ and is a month long course of HIV drugs which are used to prevent someone from becoming HIV positive after they have been exposed to the virus. The drugs need to be taken within 72 hours of the person being exposed to HIV – after this time frame they won’t work.
PEP is available from sexual health and HIV clinics and hospital A&E departments – but not from GPs.