Intro­du­cing PrEP in the Neth­er­lands would be cost effect­ive. With a sig­ni­fic­ant price reduc­tion, it could even be cost saving. These two find­ings from a study that Dutch research­ers from Erasmus MC and AMC pub­lished in the Lancet Infec­tious Dis­eases should be music to the ears of the Dutch Min­ister for Health Edith Schip­pers.

 

PrEP – a smart invest­ment

Recently PrEP became avail­able in Europe, but in the Neth­er­lands it won’t be covered by health insur­ance. The costs of PrEP are high: 7,400 euros per person per year for daily use. PrEP can safely be taken “peri­od­ic­ally”, several hours before one has sex and two con­sec­ut­ive days after. Then costs are much lower, around 3,850 euros per year. For most people, this is still unaf­ford­able. At a cost reduc­tion of 40 percent PrEP would be cost saving, the sci­ent­ists cal­cu­lated.

With every pre­ven­ted infec­tion we prevent a life­time of HIV treat­ment for 500,000 euros,” researcher David van de Vijver (Erasmus MC) explains. And with PrEP we could prevent between 1,000 to 2,500 new HIV infec­tions over the next decade.

Every year there are more than a thou­sand new HIV infec­tions in the Neth­er­lands. Approx­im­ately 70 percent of these infec­tions occur among men who have sex with men. In most cases this happens even before people are aware they have HIV. Users of PrEP not only protect them­selves against HIV infec­tion, but also their sex part­ners.

 

On Friday 30th Septem­ber, Aids Fonds and Soa Aids Neder­land, along with COC and WINQ magazine, organ­ise an evening debate about PrEP in De Balie. Free tickets can be ordered at De Balie.

Last updated 03/01/2017