Taking a daily pill to reduce HIV risk -- better known as pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP -- remains one of the most exciting biomedical prevention strategies on the horizon. Daily use of some antiretrovirals has shown up to 73% efficacy in preventing HIV transmission among men who have sex with men (MSM). San Francisco will soon become the first city in the nation to offer PrEP to MSM.
Still, PrEP is a polarizing topic. Depending upon whom you ask, it's often described as either a "magic bullet" or an unrealistic, "boutique" intervention. And questions abound, such as: Who will pay for it? And what are the health consequences of placing HIV-negative people on HIV medications they don't really need?
Rod McCullom has written and produced for ABC News and NBC, and has reported for Ebony, The Advocate, Colorlines, the Black AIDS Institute and others. Rod blogs on politics, pop culture and black gay news at rod20.com.
Comment by: Andy
Sat., Dec. 10, 2011 at 12:55 pm EST
Lets see, I counted one antiquidated story about a "cure", 1 historic observation, 4 discussions about new avenues of prevention, 1 description of the adap crisis, 2 decriptions of what groups are most at risk of getting HIV and 1 issue about criminalization. Methods of prevention and understanding who is at risk are important, but prevention doesn't really do much for people who have the virus. Still, these issues occupied no less than six out of ten "defining stories". Two more were history and ONLY TWO actually addressed the issues we face-the ADAP crisis and the rise in criminalization. These don't exactly show progress. It looks to me as if 2011 was a pretty grim beast with a window towards the past and a middle finger extended towards anyone living with the virus. I hope that in 2012, we begin to understand that people currently living with HIV have HIV related needs, and make some progress in addressing these.
Comment by: Dixie
Sun., Dec. 4, 2011 at 12:44 am EST
I was so saddened to hear about the 13 year old
boy who was denied admission to a school in Hershey, Pennsylvania because he was HIV positive. How incredible!
How sad that people are still so damn ignorant!
Bless Ryan White and this 13 year old boy. I am sorry that he doesn't want to show his face but
can you blame him? We live in a world of ignorant, condemning, and mean (it all goes together), people. It sickens me to think that in 2011, people can be so judgmental and so ignorant. I don't think that would have happened in the South, actually. I hope not.
Nonetheless, I admire Ryan White and it's a shame that, for all his struggles in the spotlight, all these years later, so much of our society is still so "in the dark". God Help Them! I guess all we can do is pray for them.
They need it much worse than we do. How do they sleep at night? oh yeah, they're stupid. Isn't that the worst disease in this country?????
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