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MP Neil Coyle calls for more people to be given PrEP trial places

Neil Coyle is pushing for HIV prevention drug PrEP to be ‘available as necessary’ as NHS England backed calls for the number of trial places to be doubled.

HIV Pre-exposure Prophylaxis is taken before sex to prevent HIV infection in people believed be to at high-risk of the illness, including some men who have sex with men, and sex workers.

The NHS has trialled the medicine on 10,000 people in England since September 2017 ahead of a future nationwide roll-out.

Bermondsey and Old Southwark MP Neil Coyle says gay and bisexual men in Southwark have been turned away from taking part in the trial in Southwark after places ran out.

In a statement published on January 11, NHS England said it wants to double access to 26,000 people by 2020 after demand ‘significantly exceeded initial expert predictions’ and committed to extra funding for the places.

Coyle told the News this week: “For a mixture of reasons, Southwark has a higher prevalence of HIV in the local population than the national average.

“PrEP is proven to extinguish the risk of further transmission of HIV and should be more widely available.

“After pressure from organisations like the Terrence Higgins Trust and local activists in Southwark, with the support of many MPs, Public Health England have done the right thing in extending the trial numbers but should make PrEP as available as necessary and not put any artificial total number on use.”

 

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