Optimizing Delivery of HIV Preexposure Prophylaxis for Women in the United States
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Optimizing Delivery of HIV Preexposure Prophylaxis for Women in the United States

Filetype[PDF-356.05 KB]


  • Alternative Title:
    AIDS Patient Care STDS
  • Description:
    Preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a highly effective HIV prevention method; however, it is underutilized among women who are at risk for acquisition of HIV. Women comprise one in five HIV diagnoses in the United States, and significant racial disparities in new HIV diagnoses persist. The rate of new HIV diagnoses among black and African American women in 2015 was 16 times greater than that of white women. These disparities highlight the importance of HIV prevention strategies for women, including the use of PrEP. PrEP is the first highly effective HIV prevention method available to women that is entirely within their control. However, because so few women who may benefit from PrEP are aware of it, few women's healthcare providers offer PrEP to their patients, PrEP has not yet achieved its potential to reduce HIV infections in women. This article describes individual and systemic barriers for women related to the uptake of PrEP services; explains how providers can identify women at risk for HIV; reviews how to provide PrEP to women; and outlines client-centered models for HIV prevention services. Better access to culturally acceptable and affordable medical and social services may offer support to women for consistent and ongoing use of PrEP. This discussion may be used to inform HIV prevention activities for women and guide interventions to decrease racial/ethnic disparities in rates of HIV infection among US women.
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