Will Nutland, DrPH, is cofounder of PrEPster, honorary assistant professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and an activist.
Will Nutland, DrPH, is cofounder of PrEPster, honorary assistant professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and an activist. PrEPster, based in England, was established in October 2015 to educate communities in England about pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), and how to access it, and to advocate for political progress in establishing the availability of PrEP in England and beyond.
What are some high-risk populations in the United Kingdom that need PrEP but aren’t accessing services?
So, if we look at the what I like to call the potential PrEP beneficial regroups, the people who could most benefit from using PrEP, we look at the HIV data from across the UK. About half of new diagnoses are amongst gay and bisexual men. And then if you look at the other half, a fairly significant proportion are Black African people, both men and women, and trans/nonbinary Black Africans, as well.
And yet, if we look at the data from the PrEP Impact trial that was conducted across a 3-year period of time, we know that heterosexual people who are having heterosexual sex were significantly less likely to leave a sexual health clinic and be offered PrEP. If you’re a Black African woman, that was a really low number; Black African men are lower still. I think that the Impact trial did really well on encouraging trans and nonbinary people to seek PrEP and to start PrEP.
We also know that there are some sex workers who could benefit from PrEP. There is a great kind of groundswell of conversations happening, particularly online, within some of the sex worker communities—particularly male sex workers and trans sex workers—about the potential benefits of using PrEP.