Too few Americans who are at risk for HIV infection are taking Truvada — a daily pill that could protect them against the virus that causes AIDS, federal health officials report.
Health care providers must help boost patient awareness and use of the drug, health experts stressed.
About 25 percent of sexually active gay and bisexual adult men, 20 percent of injection drug users, and less than 1 percent of sexually active heterosexuals are at high risk for HIV infection, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Vital Signs report. People in these groups need to know about Truvada, which is also known as the pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) pill, the government experts said.
Taken daily, the PrEP pill can reduce the risk of sexually acquired HIV by more than 90 percent. The PrEP pill can reduce injection drug users’ risk of HIV by more than 70 percent, the experts said.
However, recent data suggests some primary care health providers have never heard of PrEP, which was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2012. The full potential of the drug to prevent HIV infections can only be achieved by increasing awareness of the drug and providing counseling for those