Why The HIV Prevention Drug, PrEP, Remains So Divisive Among The LGBT Community


Many in the gay community have been divided on the HIV/AIDS prevention drug Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, or PrEP, since it was first introduced in 2012. Some medical sources have argued that the side effects of its use are unclear, and that patients' adherence to taking the pill regularly could be erratic. 

This week, Black AIDS Institute President Phill Wilson and Gawker's Rich Juzwiak sat down to discuss the controversies surrounding the use surrounding PrEP. During the interview, Juzwiak suggested that many of the concerns were based on "Doomsday forecasting" that harkened back to the peak of the HIV/AIDS crisis in the mid-1980s. 

"I just think of it as an additional tool," he said. "For [people who don't like to use condoms], for those experiences that happen, for those times that you were drunk, you have this pill in addition to [condoms]."

Wilson, however, has a slightly different mindset, and believes that too much of HIV/AIDS prevention was still heavily focused on "sex-shaming" people. 

"The virus is the problem," he said, adding: "People can and should have as much as sex as they want to have. We need to focus on how we can attack the virus as opposed to sex-shaming people or trying to police the quantity of sex that they have or the quality of sex that they have or who they have sex with."