California Wants to Prevent HIV By Making Treatments Prescription-Free: Brainstorm Health

October 9, 2019, 9:06 PM UTC

Hello and happy hump day, readers.

California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed a new law that will allow pharmacies in the state to dispense HIV-prevention medications—such as the so-called PrEP products that have halted HIV transmission among vulnerable communities to a stunning extent in clinical trials—to many people who don’t have a prescription.

“Recent breakthroughs in the prevention and treatment of HIV can literally save lives,” said Newsom in a statement. “All Californians deserve access to PrEP… I applaud the Legislature for taking action to expand access to these treatments and getting us close to ending HIV and AIDS for good.”

There’s been a groundswell of support for these kinds of HIV-prevention drugs, given their impressive efficacy record, among both the state and federal agencies.

Gilead, the biotech giant that makes Truvada (one of the most prominent treatments in the space), announced a proposed deal with the Trump administration earlier this year to donate thousands of doses for free—at least until the next iteration of the drug comes to market.

The California effort, in the meantime, is meant to address disparities in HIV drug access in rural and isolated communities.

Read on for the day’s news.

Sy Mukherjee, @the_sy_guy,


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