The British government on March 15 announced that they will be offering HIV-prevention pill to all those at high risk of catching the virus. Health campaigners have hailed the decision by England as a 'milestone moment'. According to reports, tens of thousands of people will have access to the highly effective drug for free.
As per reports, the department of health has said that the highly effective pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) drug will be available to people later this year thanks to the one-year 16 million pounds ($20 million)national funding programme. Health Secretary Matt Hancock has stated that this move will benefit tens and thousands of people's lives and will drive England towards their ambition of zero HIV transmissions in this decade.
As per reports, PrEP can reduce the risk of transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) by 99 per cent. The virus is responsible for causing AIDS. The drug is even recommended by the World Health Organisation as an additional prevention option for those at substantial risk.
Even though the effectiveness of the drug has been proved, its availability worldwide is irregular. Some nations have not approved it in their countries while others do not make it available for free through national health services. Reports indicate that the UK has more than 100,000 people who are HIV+.
BREAKING:— Terrence Higgins Trust (@THTorguk) March 15, 2020
Health Secretary @MattHancock has announced #PrEP WILL be uncapped in England. This is an important moment in the fight against HIV.
Roll-out must now happen rapidly so no one is left behind.
This is a victory years in the making. Thank you for standing with us. pic.twitter.com/N7xp0EpkMO
Health campaigners and various groups have welcomed the announcement but added that it is imperative to continue the programme after the end of the one-year funding period. They also added that authorities must ensure that under-served groups, especially women and trans people, have access to PrEP. According to reports, Deborah Gold, chief executive of National AIDS Trust said that the move is a milestone moment in a five-year battle. She added that making the drug available was not the end goal, but just one part of the larger struggle.