Aileen Campbell visits Waverley Care

Following last week’s landmark decision to make PrEP available on the NHS in Scotland, we were delighted to welcome Public Health Minister, Aileen Campbell to Waverley Care.

The Minister met with Waverley Care and SX Scotland volunteers and project workers to find out more about what the decision will mean for our HIV prevention work, and most importantly for people who are likely to benefit.

The meeting was a great chance to move beyond the decision itself and look at the challenges of making sure people in the community can actually access PrEP.

Following the decision, each of Scotland’s 14 local NHS boards need to decide who will be able to access PrEP, which involves the use of HIV drugs by those without the virus as a means of preventing infection.  It is likely that PrEP will only be made available to those at the greatest risk of HIV. We believe it is important that this should include individuals from all of the most at-risk groups, including gay and bisexual men, and African communities in Scotland.

Following the outcome of the NHS board decisions, we need to make sure that people can access clear and accurate information and advice about PrEP. This information needs to look at PrEP as part of a range of prevention measures, highlighting the continued importance of condom use, and increasing awareness of treatment as prevention.

We look forward to continuing to work with our PrEP4Scotland partners at HIV Scotland, THT Scotland and NAT, along with health boards and the Scottish Government, to make sure that PrEP is available to those who will benefit most. If you have questions about PrEP, you can find out more in this short Q&A or you can contact our SX Health Improvement Worker, Alastair Rose.

Following her visit, the Minister recorded this message, along with Alastair.