British MPs call for HIV prevention PrEP drugs to be made available on NHS in England

pharmafile | September 21, 2018 | News story | Medical Communications  

PrEP drugs – pre-sex drugs that are able to dramatically reduce the chances a person has of contracting HIV – should be made available on the NHS, according to three British Members of Parliament (MP).

Tory MPs Crispin Blunt and Nigel Evans, and Labour MP Stephen Doughty told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme that PrEP has proven cost effective during continuing trials and that it should be made available on Britain’s National Health Service (NHS).

The call comes after it was revealed that PrEP’s patent will soon end and thus cheaper generic versions of the drug may become available. The patent for Truvada, was overturned in the UK  yesterday which would thus let the NHS use much cheaper, unbranded versions of the drug.

Nevertheless, while the preventative drug is currently available on the NHS in Scotland and Wales, NHS England is yet to give it the go-ahead, despite having expanded continuing trials this year.

Nevertheless, Labour MP Stephen Doughty, who chairs the All Party Parliamentary Group on HIV and AIDS, called the drug a “life-saver for individuals, and a cost-saver for the NHS.”

“The long-term costs to the NHS of people acquiring HIV and other co-morbidities is going to cost lots, lots more,” he continued. “It’s not just gay men who get infected and live with the consequences. It’s many other people.”

Conservative MP Nigel Evans added that the only blockage to the drug being available was the judgemental attitudes of those who “would rather see young gay guys be HIV positive and on expensive drugs for the rest of their lives rather than allow them this protection.”

Meanwhile Crispin Blunt called for the programme to be “fully rolled out” as he suggested that making PrEP available “for all the people that might benefit will save the NHS money and assist the long-term elimination of HIV.”

The NHS commented “The NHS will look at evidence from the trial to expand prevention services in the most effective way.”

Louis Goss

Related Content

No items found

Latest content