World Health Organization Endorses HIV Medication for Prevention
July 23, 2012
The World Health Organization on Friday endorsed the concept of using HIV drugs to prevent infection in high-risk HIV-negative individuals. WHO made its statement four days after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the use of Gilead Sciences Inc.'s Truvada for pre-exposure prophylaxis. WHO did not back a particular drug for PrEP, but, "It needs to be a drug like Truvada that has been developed for prevention purposes," said spokesperson Sarah Russell. Truvada, which already is in use as an HIV treatment, costs about $14,000 a year in the United States. "We believe Gilead will bring the price down to about $100 per year per person" in some poor countries, Russell said; company officials could not be reached immediately for comment. WHO noted that it is vital that people taking HIV drugs for PrEP be HIV-negative before they start the regimen to avoid the development of drug-resistant virus. It also stressed the importance of daily adherence to the medication and of continuing to use condoms.
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
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