Sticking to a daily routine isn't always easy. Sometimes we forget to take our vitamins or take out the trash. Or, for some folks, they forget to take their PrEP.
When you miss a day or more of PrEP, you may have some questions about what that means. Or, if you lose your PrEP, you may also be wondering what your next step is. In this blog, we're going to explain what happens when you forget to take your PrEP, if you lose it, and more. We'll also let you know what your best options are.
Frequently Asked Questions About PrEP
1. What do I do if I miss a day of PrEP? What if I miss two days?
If you forget to take your PrEP for one day, take it as soon as you remember. If you miss two days, you should also take it as soon as you remember. However, if you miss more than five days of PrEP, your protection against HIV drops by 40%. If this happens, be sure to use a condom. If you do not use protection, get tested as soon as possible. If you think you've been exposed to HIV, PEP can help prevent contracting HIV.
2. What happens if I lose my PrEP?
If you lose your PrEP and don’t have access to a pharmacy, use a condom. Be sure to check the condoms and their expiration dates. If you lose your PrEP, you can call your medical provider. If you are a patient of Apicha CHC, we will do their best to get you more PrEP and tested if needed. If you are out of NYC (or where ever you live), and you do have access to a pharmacy, your medical doctor may be able to help you get an emergency refill. If you're going on vacation soon and have concerns about your PrEP, talk to your medical provider about this before you leave for vacation.
3. I might have been exposed to HIV. Can I take PEP?
If you had unprotected sex and think you may have been exposed to HIV, PEP is an option for you. You can take PEP up to 72 hours after potential HIV exposure. In a nutshell, PEP stops the spread of the HIV virus. This means it will prevent further infection, and the virus will die. If you think you need PEP, talk with or schedule an appointment with one of our providers, and we will make sure to get you PEP within a 72-hour time frame.
4. If I had unprotected sex, should I get tested?
Yes. If you had unprotected sex, we highly recommend coming in to our clinic to get tested for HIV and STDs. You do not need an appointment to get tested, and can do a walk in. But, please be aware we might be busy.
5. Can I use my friend's PrEP?
We do not recommend you use your friend's PrEP. It's important that you have your own prescription and have a reliable and correct supply of PrEP.
How Apicha CHC Can Help You
At Apicha CHC, we are very proud of our viral load suppression rate for all our patients, the number of our patients on PrEP, and the number of people we get tested.
Our healthcare providers are specialists in HIV prevention, treatment, and care. If you come for testing and remain for care at our community health center, you will receive consistent treatment from a healthcare provider who can attend to all of your health needs including HIV.
There are three ways we can help:
1. HIV Testing
We provide completely confidential HIV testing services at Apicha CHC. To sign up for our HIV Testing services, click here and select HIV/STD testing from the drop down.
2. We can get you PrEP
If you become part of Apicha CHC's PrEP Program, you will be assigned a medical provider at Apicha CHC who will assess whether PrEP is right for you and will prescribe you Truvada as PrEP.
Our PrEP staff can also help you:
- Enroll in insurance or sign you up for special PrEP cost programs
- Set up your appointments
- Remind you when your pills are running out
- You can easily pick-up your prescription at Apicha CHC's brand new in-house pharmacy or you can use our free delivery service!
You can request an appointment to get started on PrEP here. Be sure to select appointment type as "Access to PrEP/PEP".
Apicha CHC's PrEP line number: (646) 740-6392.
3. Become a part of our HIV Clinic
If you know you're HIV-positive and don't currently have a medical provider or aren't happy with the one you do have, feel free to become a part of the Apicha CHC family.
You can request an appointment here. Be sure to select appointment type as "Primary Medical Care".