Assessment of Barriers and Facilitators to Prescribing HIV Pre-exposure Prophylaxis by Primary Care Providers

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The Ohio State University

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HIV infections have been, and continue to be, a significant health concern for the United States. The FDA approval, extensive marketing, prescribing, and uptake of a drug therapy known as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) has been associated with a 25% reduction in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission over the last several years. This reduction is excellent news, and we need to build upon past success. Research indicates that less than 20% of candidates for PrEP are prescribed the medication. The objective of this evidence-based project was to conduct a needs assessment of the barriers and facilitators to prescribing PrEP by primary care providers at a free clinic. The clinic was student-run and staffed by volunteer healthcare providers with 25 partiicpants completing the study. Most participants indicated that they were familiar with PrEP, but also reported poor knowledge about PrEP guidelines. A majority of participants indicated that they infrequently collected a sexual history from patients. Our findings suggest that participants could benefit from education and training on PrEP as well as access to tools and resources for HIV prevention and management. Our findings also suggest that creating a culture in which HIV prevention is a priority and participants and their patients feel comfortable discussing sexual behaviors could improve the prescribing of PrEP.



HIV prevention, HIV transmission, PrEP, primary care, sexual health, sexually transmitted infections