HIV prevention drug Truvada receives funding

Pharmac to widen access to HIV drug

Pharmac to widen access to HIV drug

Many PrEP users resorted to importing their medication from overseas for about US$36 per month.

Pharmac announced on Wednesday that it will fund PrEP under the brand name Truvada from March 1. It has been proven to be very effective at stopping the transmission of HIV.

The decision to publicly fund the preventative drug has been celebrated by LGBTQ and HIV/AIDS activists across the country.

"Together with safe sex practise, early diagnosis and access to treatment, we expect that PrEP will significantly reduce HIV transmission rates in New Zealand", said Pharmac chief executive Sarah Fitt.

The foundation's executive director, Jason Myers, said it would be a big help.

The New Zealand AIDS foundation said Pharmac's decision was a giant leap toward for HIV prevention in New Zealand.

"For those who struggle with consistent condom use - which can be for a range of legitimate reasons - NZAF is delighted that there will now be publicly funded access to this effective, alternative way of staying safe from HIV for those who need it", he added.

The public funding of PrEP is expected to have a drastic impact on the overall health of this group, and following from this announcement, NZAF hopes to see a drop in the number of New Zealanders diagnosed with HIV in the next year.

About 3500 people in New Zealand are now estimated to be living with HIV.


Truvada was registered for PrEP in August 2017, and Pharmac has worked closely with the New Zealand AIDS Foundation to support them in preparing a funding application for PrEP, which was reviewed by Pharmac's clinical advisers and given a high priority for funding in November 2017, Ms Fitt said.

The number of new diagnoses was up for another year, with the vast majority of those affected men who have sex with men.

The drug is already funded as part of a treatment for those infected with HIV but will now also be free for those not infected but at high risk of contracting the virus.

Other countries to subsidize PrEP are Brazil, France, Norway, Brazil, Belgium and Scotland.

PrEP is taken daily and builds up in the system, preventing an HIV infection from establishing.

It is also available through pilot projects in Wales and England.

Prior to this game changing development, PrEP was only available at a cost of around $1000 for 30 Truvada pills.

The cost of a public PrEP scheme is now higher than buying the drugs privately, as Gilead still holds patents covering the provision.

HIV researchers believe rolling out PrEP might actually be cost-effective in the long term.

Recommended News

  • Hyundai's all-new Elite i20 unveiled at Auto Expo 2018

    Hyundai's all-new Elite i20 unveiled at Auto Expo 2018

    Moreover, the hatchback was also spied ahead of its official India debut proffering a closer look to the vehicle . The petrol version is powered by 1.2 litre engine while the diesel trims come with 1.4 litre powertrains.
    Watford score three late goals to beat 10-man Chelsea 4-1

    Watford score three late goals to beat 10-man Chelsea 4-1

    I go to sleep without a problem that maybe, maybe, I could do this or that. "I work every day, and I give 120 percent. On his part, Janmaat said: "I know I can score goals, I did it in the past previous year against Chelsea as well".
    Jaguar restarts production of the D-Type race auto

    Jaguar restarts production of the D-Type race auto

    The D-type, which won the Le Mans 24 Hours race three times between 1955 and 1957, was powered by the six-cylinder XK engine. When the final D-Type rolled out of Jaguar's factory 62 years ago, it was chassis number 75 of 100.
  • Knicks' Kristaps Porzingis goes down with left knee injury vs

    Knicks' Kristaps Porzingis goes down with left knee injury vs

    Porzingis dunked with 8:46 left in the half and landed awkwardly, crashing to the court and holding his left knee. The popular Latvian star is averaging just under 23 points per game this year, with 6.7 rebounds and 2.4 blocks.
    Google updates Motion Still app, brings AR stickers to Android smartphones

    Google updates Motion Still app, brings AR stickers to Android smartphones

    You don't need to calibrate it, and it should work on any Android device with a gyroscope (that is, you shouldn't need ARCore ). If you want these updates even earlier, you can enroll in Google Play Services beta track.
    Competition: European Commission is notifying Apple about the Shazam acquisition

    Competition: European Commission is notifying Apple about the Shazam acquisition

    Apple's proposed acquisition of Shazam does not meet the minimum turnover required for competition clearance by the EC. The Commission said it now intends to ask Apple to notify the transaction.
  • Contentious IOC meetings kick off with Olympic Games set to open

    Contentious IOC meetings kick off with Olympic Games set to open

    However, Pound's view was not shared by the other International Olympic Committee delegates at the meeting. The IOC also banned 43 Russians for life from the Olympics following a further inquiry.
    The Back Nine: LII best Super Bowl of them all

    The Back Nine: LII best Super Bowl of them all

    For any football fan outside of Philly, it's tough to think Brady won't lead the Patriots to a sixth Super Bowl win . It sure seems that the Eagles aren't ready to give up on the investment they made in Wentz, the ultimate competitor.
    Gisele Bundchen consoles Tom Brady in post-Super Bowl photo

    Gisele Bundchen consoles Tom Brady in post-Super Bowl photo

    The Brady play-call came on third-and-5 with 12 minutes left in the second quarter and the Patriots down 9-3. The three-time NFL MVP told reporters before the Super Bowl that he would be back for the 2018 season.
  • All's Not Well with Wells Fargo

    All's Not Well with Wells Fargo

    Maximum and minimum EPS estimate for the current quarter is projected at $1.21 and $0.95, respectively, according to 27 analysts. Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) was down 5.57% at $118.58 on Friday after poor earnings and many price target cuts were on Monday.
    Winter Weather Advisory posted for Tuesday

    Winter Weather Advisory posted for Tuesday

    The storm will move up over New England on Thursday with a high pressure system moving rapidly behind the departing low pressure. Wednesday temperatures for Greater Lowell will see a daytime high of 31 degrees and nighttime low of 23 degrees.
    ME  woman finds 3-inch lizard in lettuce

    ME woman finds 3-inch lizard in lettuce

    So, not only is Carr concerned about finding a lizard in her lettuce, she's anxious she may have eaten the tip of the tail. Carr's biologist friend believes the reptile is a blue-bellied lizard native to the west coast state.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.