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Parliamentary questions
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27 March 2018
Question for written answer E-001858-18
to the Commission
Rule 130
Martina Anderson (GUE/NGL)

 Subject:  Availability of Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP)
 Answer in writing 

Across the island of Ireland, HIV infection rates are climbing among men who have sex with men (MSM), showing a fourfold increase since 2005.

Post-exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) is used to treat those who have been exposed to HIV, with its effectiveness based on a 72-hour window period post-exposure. It is available free at the point of need from any sexually transmitted infection/genitourinary medicine (STI/GUM) clinic across the island.

From December 2017, Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) was made available in pharmacies in the south of Ireland, but it is, so far, not available in pharmacies in the north.

When introduced into public health services, PrEP has been shown to make sex safer, and can drastically reduce the transmission rate of HIV. The drug can be 86% effective, and some studies show even higher effectiveness.

Does the Commission agree that PrEP is an effective preventative method for reducing the transmission rates of HIV?

Does the Commission agree that charging up to EUR 100 for a month’s prescription of PrEP is clearly exploitation of those who stand at the highest risk of HIV infection?

Does the Commission agree that this divergence in the availability of PrEP in the island of Ireland marks a dangerous precedent?

Last updated: 12 April 2018Legal notice