NHS England once again denies the public PrEP
NHS England has confirmed its decision to remove PrEP from the official NHS commissioning process, leaving this potentially life changing drug on the shelf and inaccessible to people at real risk of HIV.
NHS England state that they have “considered and accepted NHS England’s external legal advice that it does not have the legal power to commission PrEP”. NAT does not accept this position.
PrEP is an HIV prevention drug, proven to be effective in stopping HIV transmission in almost every case if taken properly. The decision by NHS England not even to consider commissioning PrEP came after 18 months of hard work from an NHS working group (comprising clinicians and experts from across the HIV sector) which demonstrated the need, efficacy and cost-effectiveness of PrEP.
Deborah Gold, Chief Executive, NAT, said: “NHS England is sitting on something that could be the beginning of the end for the HIV epidemic – if only it were made available. The refusal to commission it for all those at significant risk is astonishing. Seventeen people are being diagnosed with HIV every day. We are extremely disappointed and we will now be looking at our options, including further legal action.”
For further information on PrEP see ‘Why is PrEP needed?’
Notes to the editor:
ABOUT NAT :
NAT (National AIDS Trust) is the UK’s leading charity dedicated to transforming society’s response to HIV. We provide fresh thinking, expertise and practical resources. We champion the rights of people living with HIV and campaign for change.
Shaping attitudes. Challenging injustice. Changing lives.
www.lifewithHIV.org – a resource for HIV positive people
www.HIVaware.org.uk – what everyone should know about HIV
For further information please contact:
Kat Smithson, Policy and Campaigns Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 020 7814 6727