HIV ( human immunodeficiency virus) and Aids (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome) are the stuff of nightmares. There is still no comprehensive cure. Symptoms are incredibly varied and difficult to detect outside of specific testing. If caught in time, the virus can be ‘functionally cured’, where a patient can still live well and much longer. Needless to say, prevention methods are preferred, but weren’t easy to get…until now.
Like everything in our health care system, it could be a rough process to get anitretroviral (preventative) medications due to insurance, cost, and access. Until recently you had to get a doctor to prescribe it to you and without insurance you could be facing down a $20,000 dollar bill. Colorado Governor Polis signed a bill forcing insurance to cover preventative means and allowing access without a prescription.
Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is a modern leader in preventative care. When used consistently, PrEP has been shown to reduce the risk of HIV infection among adult men and women by 92%. This once a day pill isn’t for every one, but there are many options. If you are uninsured, the sites below can provide grants or sliding scale options.
- GetYourPrEP.com – free programs and consultations available
- https://www.heydenver.org/prep – free testing and consultations
- https://coloradohealthnetwork.org/resources-information/ – free testing, programming, consultations
- https://denverelement.org/testing – free testing, community resources