Caring for Patients needing pre-exposure prophylaxis
What is PrEP?
PrEP, pre-exposure prophylaxis, is the use of an HIV medication by someone who is HIV negative taken in advance of a potential exposure to the HIV virus to prevent infection with HIV. The medication used for PrEP is tenofovir disproxil fumarate (TDF) and emtricitabine (FTC) combined together in one tablet taken once a day. It is important to note that PrEP does not prevent other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphillis, or hepatitis C.
Is PrEP covered in Alberta?
Yes! PrEP is free-of-charge for all Alberta residents who receive their PrEP prescription from a designated prescriber and meet the eligibility criteria. A list of designated prescribers, who are doctors and nurse practitionners, can be found here:
Individuals with NIHB are not restricted to seeing a designated prescriber, nor are those with private insurance such as plans through their employer.
Do I have to follow-up regularly with my prescriber if I’m on PrEP?
Yes! After someone begins PrEP, they must follow up with their prescriber after one month and then every three months. You will be required to complete regular blood work to make sure you have not contracted HIV as well as to screen for any other STIs.
Does SRx Pharmacy stock PrEP medication?
Yes! We regularly fill prescriptions for PrEP and offer counselling on the prevention of HIV. We also provide certain free-of-charge safe sex supplies, such as condoms, to patients who are at risk of contracting HIV.
Who do I ask if I have questions about PrEP?
Two of our pharmacists, Stephanie and Sonal, are knowledgeable on the prevention and treatment of HIV and STIs. They will work together with your PrEP prescriber to ensure your prescriptions are filled on time, your lab work is completed on schedule, and to answer any questions that may arise.