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AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2014 May;30(5):416-24. doi: 10.1089/AID.2013.0212. Epub 2014 Jan 20.

Provider attitudes toward oral preexposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention among high-risk men who have sex with men in Lima, Peru.

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1 Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons , New York, New York.


Oral preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) was the first biomedical intervention to demonstrate efficacy in preventing HIV infection among men who have sex with men (MSM). Healthcare providers' attitudes toward PrEP will be critical in translating this finding into effective public health rollout programs. In a convenience sample of 186 healthcare providers in Peru, we assessed knowledge, barriers, and attitudes to prescribe and monitor HIV PrEP for high-risk MSM and transgender women, the populations with the highest HIV incidence in this setting. A total of 57.5% reported awareness of PrEP, and awareness was independently associated with caring for more than 50 MSM (OR: 3.67, p<0.002). Lack of local guidelines, concern about increased high-risk behavior, antiretroviral drug resistance, and limited availability of antiretrovirals for HIV-infected individuals were the most common barriers to prescribing PrEP. Of all physicians 44.6% indicated that they would be likely to prescribe oral PrEP now; likelihood to prescribe was higher if PrEP were supported by local guidelines (70.3%, p<0.001), if more trials supported its effectiveness (68.5%, p<0.001), and if intermittent use were shown to be effective (62.2%, p=0.019). Physicians were more likely to prescribe PrEP now if they care for more than 50 MSM (OR: 6.62, p=0.010). Infectious disease specialists were less likely to prescribe PrEP (OR: 0.10, p=0.003) than nonspecialists. Successful large-scale implementation of PrEP in Peru will require focused educational campaigns to increase awareness and address concerns among healthcare providers.

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