NEW: PrEP and nPEP Guideline for Canadian Doctors

Posted by: The Village Pharmacy

A new guideline for prescribing PrEP and nPEP to prevent HIV infection has been laid out by the Biomedical HIV Prevention Working Group of the CIHR Canadian HIV Trials Network, co-authored by Dr. Darrell Tan, Director of the University of Toronto Clinical Research Unit on HIV Prevention and co-leader of the CIHR Canadian HIV Trials Network Biomedical Prevention Working Group. 

The Canadian Guideline on HIV PrEP and nPEP  will better equip all primary care practitioners in Canada to prescribe PrEP and nPEP.  It will also help increase awareness and access to the latest, research-based HIV prevention options, and decrease the incidence of HIV infection over time.

See also: The Globe and Mail article on the new PrEP and nPEP guidelines

Listen to the Podcast with Dr. Darrell Tan: HIV pre- and post-exposure prevention measures: clinical practice guideline

PrEP = Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis. It is medication that is taken every day to proactively prevent HIV

nPEP* is nonoccupational Post-Exposure Prophylaxis to prevent HIV infection. Medications for nPEP are administered within 72 hours of being exposed to HIV in order to prevent HIV infection. 

*In general, the term 'PEP' is used more commonly and effectively, has the same meaning as nPEP. The terms 'nPEP' and 'PEP' are used as distinct terms primarily in clinical or research contexts. 

The Canadian Guideline on HIV PrEP and nPEP has been developed for Canadian doctors and other clinicians working in primary care, infectious diseases, emergency medicine, nursing, pharmacy and related disciplines. The guideline outlines the following:

  • who PrEP & nPEP/PEP should be prescribed to (indications)
  • the medications and doses that should be prescribed (regimens)
  • practical advice, including follow-up, monitoring and testing recommendations 

What this means for you:

Till now, most people wanting to go on PrEP or needing a prescription for nPEP would see HIV specialty doctors who were familiar with PrEP and nPEP. This limited options and access to only those primary care providers who were familiar with PrEP. 

The good news is that the Canadian Guideline on HIV PrEP and nPEP clearly explains how and when to prescribe PrEP and nPEP to all primary care practitioners in Canada

This means that you can feel confident going to your own family physician for PrEP, or one in your neighbourhood, or your local emergency department for nPEP. You'll get the right medications and proper follow-up, as per the newly released guideline.

You can refer your doctor to the links below for the full guideline, as needed. 

Questions? Get in touch with us at The Village Pharmacy anytime