Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP)
What is PrEP?
- Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is a daily HIV prevention medication that can reduce the risk of contracting HIV by up to 99%. PrEP is for people who are HIV negative and at high, ongoing risk of contracting HIV.
- Approved by Health Canada, PrEP works by using a combination of antiretroviral drugs to prevent HIV from establishing a hold in your body. It requires a prescription from a physician or a nurse practitioner.
- A common brand of PrEP is Truvada, while the generic drug is Tenofovir DF 300 mg/Emtricitabine 200 mg.
- For more detailed information about what PrEP is, click here.
What is the cost of PrEP?
- PrEP is covered under Manitoba Pharmacare or Employment and Income Assistance for those who meet the eligibility criteria. Contact your primary care provider to discuss your eligibility. PrEP is also covered if you have or qualify for First Nations & Inuit Health Branch benefits. Additionally, select third-party insurance plans may cover PrEP.
- To determine the cost of PrEP, you will need to contact your primary care provider who will help determine if you are eligible for coverage. If you are not eligible, you may also contact your third-party insurance company to see if they offer coverage. Download our guide on what questions to ask your provider to determine how much PrEP will cost.
- The cost of PrEP without any coverage is roughly $250 a month.
What you should know about PrEP:
- PrEP should be used together with other prevention strategies like condoms, as PrEP does not prevent other STI’s and blood-borne infections.
- PrEP requires daily adherence to the medication and HIV/STI testing, urine and blood work monitoring every three months.
- PrEP medications are safe and side effects are rare. However, the most common side effects of initiating PrEP may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache and dizziness. More serious, longer-term side effects may include a decrease in bone mineral density that appears reversible once PrEP is stopped and a decrease in kidney function that generally resolves on discontinuation.
How to PREP for PrEP:
Interested in taking PrEP? Follow these steps to get a prescription:
- Read about PrEP
- Decide how you will pay for the medication. Contact your primary care provider and insurance company to determine if you have coverage for PrEP or a portion of coverage. If your primary care provider needs information to assist you, direct them here to support you. Your doctor can consult with Nine Circles staff if support is needed.
- Speak with your primary care provider and request a prescription. If you don’t have a primary care provider, call us at 204-940-6000 to discuss obtaining a PrEP prescription.