Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Court battle in England over PrEP/Truvada - effective to stop infection by 86%


One of the strategies here in Australia to "end HIV" is the recent promotion of PrEP in high risk groups. PrEP is Truvada from what I understand (it's a bit late for me darlings) but hasn't yet gone through all the bureaucracy to be subsidised yet in Australia through the PBS for patients who don't have HIV. 

It's a preventative strategy and another prong the the multi-pronged attack here to end HIV. It's been approved in May by Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) for use as PrEP, so I guess it won't be much longer before it's listed on the PBS and prescribed for such use. The PBS is part of Australian health care where the gov heavily subsidises medicine to make them universally affordable. Meanwhile a huge study where 3,700 people in NSW will be provided with PrEP for free. I note it's a conservative state Lieberal gov that has made this study available; credit where it's due.

However there is an extraordinary court battle going on in England between their National Health Service and those wanting to use PrEP as a prevention against getting HIV. Basically the NHS says it's not their responsibility. It's been taken to court over there by PrEP advocates and the court has ruled the NHS has to subsidise. But the NHS says it will appeal the decision. 

WTF? Why on earth a so called "health service" would go through the courts so as not to provide a preventative health service is just insanity. Are the people running it economists or health professionals? Either way it makes huge sense in both cases to make PrEP there available to those high risk groups who would benefit. What's the alternative? A lifetime of much more expensive treatment FFS. To not subsidise PrEP is a false economy if there ever was one.

BTW I have to also note that Truvada hasn't had any long term toxicity studies done on it. I took it the first time I took HIV meds  as part of the combination anti-retroviral treatment, and it didn't work out well at all with total kidney failure due to an allergic reaction to the mix of Truvada and Naproxen. Very rare, trust me to have it happen to :s  I note in the below video it mentions Truvada being hard on the kidneys.
The High Court has told the NHS in England it can fund a drug that can prevent HIV - after health bosses argued it was not their responsibility.

NHS England previously said councils should provide the pre-exposure prophylaxis (Prep) drug as they are in charge of preventative health.

This stance was successfully challenged by the National Aids Trust (NAT).

But the High Court ruling does not make funding of Prep automatic and the NHS is set to appeal.

The ruling by Mr Justice Green said health bosses had "erred" in arguing it was not their responsibility. BBC