i-Base Q&A resources on PrEP: increased use of off-label PrEP in the UK shows need for NHS support and risk to PEP services
Simon Collins, HIV i-Base
Since the announcement of the early results of the PROUD study in October 2014, the i-Base information service has received an increasing number of enquiries about PrEP.
This includes requests for information about accessing generic TDF/FTC from online suppliers and on the data for different ways that PrEP can be taken. 
Over the last year i-Base has increasingly heard about people accessing PrEP through PEP services, a practice that was highlighted again in a recent popular community blog. 
This level of demand supports anecdotal reports that PrEP has been increasingly accessed and used with little or no medical support.
In response, there are now five online Q&A pages that cover most of the questions that have been asked about PrEP. These may be useful referral links for clinics that are getting similar enquiries.
- Where can I buy PrEP or HCV meds online and is it legal in the UK?
- How to take PrEP: daily dosing and other options?
- How do I safely use PrEP if I buy it online?
- Can I check PrEP from the Internet is genuine?
- Can I get PrEP privately in the UK?
Many people accessing PrEP via PEP services are likely to be unaware that buying generic PrEP online is both legal and dramatically cheaper than a private prescription.
There is an urgency for routine monitoring of PrEP to be provided as part of NHS sexual services.
- i-Base Q&A service: recent question on PrEP.
- Owens G. Get free P(r)EP on the NHS – NOW. Web blog (12 October 2015).