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PLoS One. 2013 May 17;8(5):e64038. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0064038. Print 2013.

Awareness and willingness to use HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis amongst gay and bisexual men in Scotland: implications for biomedical HIV prevention.

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  • 1Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, Medical Research Council, Glasgow, United Kingdom.



To investigate the awareness of, and willingness to use, HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), and willingness to take part in a PrEP study among gay and bisexual men in Scotland.


Cross-sectional survey of 17 gay commercial venues in Glasgow and Edinburgh in May 2011 (N = 1515, 65.2% response rate); 1393 are included in the analyses.


Just under one-third of participants had heard of PrEP (n = 434; 31.2%), with awareness associated with being aged older than 35 years, talking to UAI partners about HIV, and with having had an HIV or STI test in the previous 12 months. Around half were willing to take part in a PrEP study (n = 695; 49.9%) or to take PrEP on a daily basis (n = 756; 54.3%). In multivariate analysis, willingness to take PrEP was associated with lower levels of education, regular gay scene attendance, 'high-risk' unprotected anal intercourse (UAI) and testing for HIV or STI in the previous 12 months. Reasons for not wanting to participate in a PrEP study or take PrEP included perceptions of low personal risk of HIV and concerns with using medication as an HIV prevention method.


There is a willingness to engage in new forms of HIV prevention and research amongst a significant number of gay and bisexual men in Scotland. Future biomedical HIV interventions need to consider the links between sexual risk behaviour, testing, and potential PrEP use.

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