PEP talk - What to do if you’ve been at risk of HIV infection

With the festive season upon us, opportunities for engaging more socially with others increases. Christmas parties, work nights out and celebrating the New Year involve most of us enjoying a well deserved bit of indulgence of one thing or another.

For the most part, over-consumption of food, drink or spending way too much is something most of us can eventually recover from. Some indulgences can even become the trigger for New Year resolutions to be healthier, wealthier and wiser.

Keeping ourselves sexually healthy while enjoying some festive fun can also be a challenge, especially when under the influence and wanting to let your hair down. Picking up an STI might even join that list of unexpected but recoverable events.

If you’ve been at risk of HIV infection, (i.e. unprotected anal sex, a condom failure, or if you’ve experienced a sexual assault*) you can access PEP from SRP at Sandyford Central, or your local A&E department when Sandyford is closed. A medical professional will assess whether PEP should be prescribed for you or not.

PEP stands for Post Exposure Prophylaxis and is a short course of anti-HIV medication (tablets) that is taken for 28 days. The sooner PEP is started the better; although effective up to 72 hours (3 days) after exposure, PEP is most effective when started within 24 hours of exposure.

When Sandyford Central is closed, you can access PEP from the A&E departments at the following hospitals:

• Glasgow Royal Infirmary

• The Queen Elizabeth University Hospital

• Royal Alexandra Hospital

• Inverclyde Royal Hospital

To ensure your treatment is effective, an appointment will be made for your follow-up care with Steve Retson Project as soon as possible.

For more information have a look at our clinic times and venues pages.

* Archway is a Sexual Assault Referral Centre for anyone over the age of 13 who has experienced rape or sexually assault in the previous 7 days and is available 24/7. Call: 0141 211 8175 for more information.

Christmas & New Year 2015/16 opening times.