PEP are ARV’s that may be used to prevent HIV infection in a person exposed to HIV within 72 hours. You must take PEP within 72 hours of exposure for it to work optimally.
PEP will most likely not prevent HIV infection if it is started more than 72 hours after exposure.
You must take one pill daily for 28 days without skipping a dose.
A HIV test is done prior to initiating PEP, 28 days after taking the first PEP dose and 3 months after the initial HIV exposure. PEP will not protect you from unplanned pregnancy or other STIs.
For PEP to work, it must be taken within 72 hours of exposure. The sooner you start it the better, every minute counts. You must test HIV negative to start PEP. You need to take PEP daily for 28 days. It is given in a pill format. Missing doses of PEP can make the treatment less effective. It may be helpful to set a daily reminder to remember the time for your dose.
Exposure to HIV is an emergency because HIV establishes infection very quickly. A health care worker will evaluate you rapidly for PEP initiation when care is sought within 72 hours after potential exposure. A HIV test will be done and once confirmed negative PEP will be prescribed. To start PEP now book a consultation with one of MYDAWA’s Clinical Officers.
If you have been exposed to HIV infection for instance through a burst or broken condom, unprotected sex from a person with a positive or unknown HIV status, you will need to test negative for HIV to be eligible for PEP. It is important to check that you did not have HIV infection before this risk. There are lots of HIV Self-Tests (HIVSTs) in the market. MYDAWA offers two tests for clients to onboard onto PrEP – Mylan and Sure Check. Only Mylan and Sure Check can be used to onboard through MYDAWA because of the uniqueness of the online onboarding journey.
You can order a Mylan or Sure Check HIVST from MYDAWA here. After completing a 28 day course of PEP, it is important to do another HIV test to ascertain PEP worked and you are still HIV negative and again test 3 months after initial exposure.
If you are continuously engaging in behaviour that exposes you to contracting HIV or you frequently need PEP, you should consider PrEP to protect yourself. After you have finished your 28 day course of PEP, and test again for HIV, if you are negative you should book a consultation to talk with one of MYDAWA’s Clinical Officers about PrEP to protect yourself long-term from HIV infection. Taking PrEP will enable you to continue to live your life as you are while keeping yourself and your relationships HIV free.