Bringing you information
on the new England PrEP IMPACT trial
At the start of December 2016, NHS England (NHSE) announced funding for a large scale PrEP trial in England. This is now called the IMPACT trial and it’s being co-ordinated by Public Health England (PHE).
Since that announcement, PrEPster and I Want PrEP Now (IWPN), along with other HIV prevention advocates, have attended meetings with PHE to help inform the trial. We will continue to engage as members of PHE’s Community Advisory Board.
We’re continuing to press NHSE and PHE for clarity on the start date. We’re concerned that the trial is already late in starting.
There will be no placebo arm of the trial. That is: everyone who is provided with drug will be given real PrEP.
Trial sites will be sexual health clinics across England. No final decision has been made on the trial sites and it is understood that sites will include urban and rural sites, in a range of clinics.
Only sexual health clinics will serve as trial sites. GPs (family doctors), community centres and voluntary organisations will NOT be trial sites (unless they offer a full sexual health service as part of their service centre).
IWPN has started an email list for those interested in enrolling on the trial. The list provides regular updates on the trial – it does not guarantee a place on the trial! https://www.iwantprepnow.co.uk/nhs-prep-trial
If you or someone you know thinks they need PrEP before the trial starts then find out how to buy PrEP online legally and safely HERE. Additionally, if the trial fills up – or someone wants PrEP but doesn’t meet the eligibility criteria – then buying online will remain one option of obtaining it.
- cis-and transgender men who have sex with men, and transgender women, who are HIV negative, report sex without condoms in the past 3 months, and consider that they will do so again in the next 3 months;
- the HIV negative partner of an HIV positive person when the positive partner is not known to be virally suppressed (i.e. has a detectable viral load), and sex without condoms is anticipated;
- other populations, not in the groups above, including those having heterosexual sex, who are clinically assessed and considered to be at similar high risk of HIV acquisition.
Action to make this a diverse trial
HIV prevention advocates have raised concerns about how the trial will recruit a diverse group of people who need PrEP. Currently, PrEP is not available on the NHS in England and thousands of people are buying generic PrEP online. But to buy PrEP online you need the money to do so, and a safe address to have the PrEP delivered to – meaning that buying online is not an option for many people. That means that current PrEP use is skewed and only obtained by certain groups and networks of people – whilst others who might benefit from PrEP cannot easily get it.
A diverse trial should seek to include:
What could we do to build a diverse trial?
PrEPster, IWPN, and other HIV prevention advocates are pushing to ensure that the IMPACT trial’s communications strategy ensures that key populations are informed about the trial and know how they can enrol on it.
We think there are key actions that can be taken, especially by and through community organisations that are rooted in the communities that might benefit from PrEP.
These actions include: