You may be familiar with Nurx, the consumer healthcare company that lets you chat with doctors as much as you'd like and get prescriptions delivered to your home. Nurx has offered PrEP through its telemedicine platform for a few years, but the real game-changer is their at-home test kit for PrEP they introduced earlier this year.
Nurx is the only company that lets you complete all of the testing required before initiating PrEP from the comfort and convenience of your own home. This means you can connect with a physician, complete all of the labwork, get your prescription filled, and have your PrEP medication delivered straight to your door — all without needing to visit a clinic, or even get off the couch.
This is a great option for those who are all about the convenience factor, but what Nurx is offering speaks to something much more than being able to get your prescriptions just like you can find a ride or order a pizza.
On top of access, studies have shown that PrEP is largely underutilized due to the stigma and shame associated with the HIV prevention medication. Nurx is addressing these barriers by offering PrEP conveniently and discretely, whether you don't feel comfortable going to the clinic to ask for PrEP, or you'd have to drive for hours in order just to find a clinic that would consider prescribing PrEP.
"Our data shows there's a clear drop off in potential PrEP users at the stage when patients need to physically show up for lab tests," said Nurx's Clinical Development Lead Jessica Horwitz. "For too many people, taking time off work, driving long hours to a clinic and facing the shame of a diagnosis code, is a deal-breaker. We expect to see a significant increase in PrEP users now that we've removed these barriers and we're proud to play a role in combating escalating HIV rates."
Another reason why more people aren't taking PrEP is general awareness and understanding of who the HIV prevention medication may be right for (hint: not just gay men).
According to the CDC, PrEP could be a good option for anyone who is currently HIV-negative, and meets one or more of the following criteria:
- In a sexual relationship with someone who is living with HIV, especially when they are not undetectable.
- In a sexual relationship with a partner or multiple partners, with an unknown HIV status.
- One or more incidences of condomless anal or vaginal sex in the last six months.
- Diagnosis of gonorrhea, chlamydia, or syphilis in the last six months.
- Inject drugs not prescribed by a medical provider or share works for drug preparation.
- Have a partner living with HIV and are trying to get pregnant.