On the final installment of The Prep Project, history sheds light to the shame and hypocrisy society imparts on condomless sex.
San Francisco has set an ambitious goal of no new HIV infections by 2020. One in three gay men living in the city is HIV+. Through a dose of real talk and pragmatism, Chris Tipton-King’s The PrEP Project lays the groundwork for how we close the gap in the next three years.
Reformat our conversations around safe gay sex.
The data shows that PrEP is 99% effective in preventing HIV. Gay men use condoms consistently only 17% of the time. Condom failure rates remain astonishingly high. If we really want to get serious about eliminating new HIV infections, our Puritanical past and misconceptions around what it truly means to have safe sex will need to change -and fast.
Tipton-King’s series is a much-needed voice in the sea of fear and propaganda that continues to drive new HIV infections in America. Unfortunately, getting on PrEP continues to be a challenge for many. Our own Jack Klein shared his saga of getting his insurance to cover the pill. Many insurance providers do not cover PrEP, or in Jack’s case, only do after a lengthy process of doctor approvals and paperwork.
While we may not be moving toward universal healthcare coverage in America anytime soon, PrEP is available for free through various non-profits and the drugmaker Gilead even has an assistance program for those who are uninsured or who can’t afford the copays.
Major props to Chris Tipton-King for adding a new voice to the table on what it really means to have safe gay sex. 2020 is just a few years away – we need some radical new thinking to make this goal a reality.