The press office of the STI / AIDS coordinator in the city of São Paulo informs that 10,012 people have already started using HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) in the capital’s units. The information comes from follow-up data from the Municipal Health Secretariat (SMS) of São Paulo.
“PrEP is an important HIV prevention technology and it expands the ways that people have to protect themselves from the virus, allowing greater freedom of choice”, says Cristina Abbate, coordinator of the STI / AIDS Coordination of SMS. “PrEP is part of what we call Combined HIV Prevention, together with condoms, encouragement to frequent testing and early treatment initiation, among others. The use of these strategies has had results, with the aim of reducing the number of new cases registered in the city in the last three years “, he adds.
The priority for PrEP are the groups most vulnerable to HIV, such as gays and men who have sex with other men (MSM), sex workers, transsexual men and women, transvestites and serodifferent couples (when one of the two lives with HIV) .
According to the Secretariat’s survey, 10,012 people registered with municipal services and started using prophylaxis. Thus, the city of São Paulo represents one third of all PrEPs started in the country.
SMS started the offer in the city of São Paulo on January 18, 2018 in five services. Currently, 43 municipal units offer this form of prevention. In addition to the 26 services of the Municipal Specialized Network on STI / AIDS in the city of São Paulo, PrEP is also available in 17 units of the Basic Health Network that offer hormones for trans and transvestite people.
“The experience with the hormone units began in October last year, with the aim of expanding and facilitating the offer for this population in a service they already attend”, explains Cristina. According to the coordinator, the goal is that by April, every municipal unit that offers hormones will be making PrEP available. There are currently 28 municipal health units that offer hormonization.
The addresses for PrEP services can be found on the official website of the city of São Paulo.