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PrEP prevents HIV — so why aren’t more people taking it?

October 4, 2019

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photo of Robert Goldstein, MD, PhD

Robert Goldstein, MD, PhD, Contributor

Dr. Robert Goldstein (he/him/his) is an instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School and serves as the medical director of the Transgender Health Program at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Goldstein received his undergraduate degree, MD, and … See Full Bio
View all posts by Robert Goldstein, MD, PhD


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October 4, 2019

How much does the drug cost? What are the side effects? How easy is to get the drug? Does every pharmacy have easy access to it? Is there stigma in having it prescribed? How many members of each at risk group are likely to even find out about it or have a PCP (if they have one) mention it to them? Any or all of those factors might be why so many at risk people aren’t getting it prescribed or taking it.
Plus anyone who’s homeless, has illegal substance abuse issues may not have the physical or emotional stability obtain and take the drug regularly without support from a health care provider or public health system and public health is yet another part of the US gov’t whose budget has been cut since the 1960’s & 1970’s because making the rich richer and waging endless military conflicts, financing the development of more & more weapons of destruction, military jets, aircraft carriers, missile systems (i.e, “Star Wars” et al) building a “wall” between the US & Mexico, supporting private prisons for undocumented immigrants have all become more important then protecting public health and particularly those at risk of HIV.

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