There’s still more work to do with PrEP education and accessibility. Using simple and convenient telemedicine services may be the way to do it!
Last month was the 8-year anniversary of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) for use as an HIV prevention drug. This was a major moment in health and the fight against HIV/AIDs. If taken consistently and correctly, PrEP can lower the risk of HIV-infection by 99%. Since then, we’ve seen other milestones like the approval of a second drug from Gilead Sciences to be used for PrEP called Descovy.
Despite these achievements, researchers and health care providers are still looking into how to make PrEP more accessible to gay men. With many young gay men avoiding health care because of discrimination from providers or a lack of accessibility, we need a way to protect them. Thankfully, that’s where telemedicine and companies like MISTR are stepping in.
Launched in 2018, MISTR is a telemedicine platform dedicated to increasing access to PrEP (Truvada and Descovy) and STI testing. One of the barriers of men using PrEP is hesitation to talk to their doctors about HIV prevention and even the fact that they are gay/bi. Users of the service can consult with a physician online and complete the required lab tests from home for FREE in California, Florida, Texas and several other states. Elsewhere, it’s just $99 per quarter and no insurance is required. Health should not depend on if someone has coverage so MISTR helps both those with insurance and those without. You do the tests at home and MISTR takes care of managing all the paperwork and back and forth with insurance companies or the various patient assistance programs, ensuring patients pay nothing for their medication. If you are struggling with expensive co-pays or if your regular pharmacy doesn’t deliver, MISTR will even work to get your medication covered and delivered for free anywhere in the United States.
The importance of telemedicine and similar services is increasing by the day. That’s especially true with our current pandemic situation. We need services that can help us and telemedicine’s great for that. At the end of the day, it can get PrEP in our hands. And recent studies show that PrEP not only helps to prevent HIV, but it also has decreased drug use and lowered levels of sexual addiction in gay men.
With all that in mind, why shouldn’t we try telemedicine? It could help you (in more ways than you imagine).