What is HIV?

HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus.

HIV can enter your body through unprotected anal, oral, vaginal sex or through sharing used needles.

HIV is a virus which once established in the body, attacks the immune system and the protective cells called CD4 cells. Once HIV enters these protective cells, HIV multiplies quickly and releases more HIV into the blood infecting other CD4 cells within the body. Once HIV is established in the body, you become HIV positive.

Once HIV positive, you remain HIV positive for life. Without treatment HIV can cause serious health problems and can lead to death through secondary AIDS related illnesses. Today living with HIV is a treatable chronic illness which can be successfully managed with medication. On treatment, people living with HIV can live normal and healthy lives.

 

Videos developed by Young Deadly Free, a project of The South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) and funded by the Australian Government Department of Health.

Free Condoms

Condoms continue to be an effective way to reduce the transmission of HIV and most other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

CLICK TO ORDER FREE CONDOMS

(Please note free condoms/ dams are only available for Qld residential addresses only.) 

PrEP is an additional way to reduce the likelihood of HIV transmission.

What is PrEP?

PrEP is short for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis.

PrEP is one form of HIV prevention used by people who don’t have HIV and are at risk of getting HIV.

Taking PrEP can be as simple as taking one oral pill a day, and it only takes about a week to provide maximum protection from HIV. Consult with your doctor though because waiting times for PrEP to become effective in preventing HIV may vary depending on your body. Several studies show PrEP can offer you very high levels of protection from HIV, when taken as prescribed by your doctor. As gay, bisexual, Brotherboy, Sistergirl or any man who has sex with men (MSM), ensuring you make informed choices about your sexual health is important.

Videos developed by Young Deadly Free, a project of The South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) and funded by the Australian Government Department of Health.

GETTING ON PREP IS EASY.

1. YOU NEED A PREP PRESCRIPTION 

You will need to visit a doctor to run some tests before getting on PrEP. On a return visit your doctor can write you a PrEP prescription.

Closing the Gap

The Closing the Gap (CTG) program makes getting PrEP affordable.

The CTG PBS Co-payment Measure improves access to PBS medicines for eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living with, or at risk of a chronic disease. This includes prescriptions for PrEP.

To access PrEP from CTG:

  • The clinic needs to be registered for CTG
  • You as an individual also need to be registered for CTG.

Are you an individual who would like to register for Closing the Gap?

Chat to your doctor (at a clinic registered for Closing the Gap) who will assist you in filling out paperwork to get you registered.

The form is called ‘Practice Incentives Program Indigenous Health Incentive and Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme Co-payment Measure patient registration and consent’.

There is criteria to qualify for registering as a patient for CTG.

The criteria is: Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people of any age who present with an existing chronic disease or are at risk of chronic disease, and in the opinion of the prescriber:

  • would experience setbacks in the prevention or ongoing management of chronic disease if the person did not take the prescribed medicine; and
  • are unlikely to adhere to their medicines regimen without assistance through the program.

Which clinics are registered for Closing the Gap?

Below is a small but growing list of clinics registered for Closing the Gap who are actively prescribing PrEP. Any GP can potentially write you a prescription for PrEP so ask your doctor. 

BRISBANE  

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Health Service in Brisbane

55 Annerley Rd, Woolloongabba QLD 4102

3240 8900

Clinic 30 Queensland AIDS Council

Dr Tracy

30 Helen Street

Teneriffe, 4005.

3017 1777

TOOWOOMBA

Carbal Medical Services

Dr Adrian Castelli

104 Mary Street

East Toowoomba QLD 4350

 07 4639 7300

THURSDAY ISLAND

Thursday Island Primary Health Centre

Dr Ineke Wever

74 Douglas Street

Thursday Island QLD 4875

07 4069 0400

TOWNSVILLE

Townsville Aboriginal and Islander Health Services

Dr Tamara Ryan

3 Ramsey Street

Garbutt, Townsville QLD 4814

07 4759 4000

YARRABAH

Gurriny Yealamucka Health Services Aboriginal Corporation

1 Bukki Road, Yarrabah, QLD 4871.

Ph: (07) 4226 4100

FINDING OTHER PREP PRESCRIBERS 

Find other recommended and experienced doctors on our PrEP Prescriber Directory HERE

If accessing PrEP with the Closing the Gap incentive, will my prescription look any different?

Yes. Your prescription will have either a:

  • CTG flag that will appear on your prescription.

or

  • The GP will hand-write the annotation on the prescription. They need to add ‘CTG’ and their signature or initials.

I now have my prescription, what do I do now?

B) GET PREP FROM A PHARMACY

You have three options for getting your PrEP tablets

1) Get PrEP from Australian In-store Pharmacies

Bring your prescription and Medicare card to your local pharmacy

Closing the Gap

Can any pharmacy dispense PrEP on a prescription marked with Closing the Gap?

  • Yes, any pharmacy can dispense your PrEP prescription. Be mindful most pharmacies will not stock PrEP so you may need to pay upfront and return to collect your months’ supply 24 or 48 hours later.

How much will PrEP cost with the Closing the Gap Incentive?

If both the clinic and you are registered for Closing the Gap, you can get PrEP:

  • Free (with a Health Care Card)
  • $6.60 (without a Health Care Card) for a month supply.

How much will PrEP cost without the Closing the Gap incentive?

Without the Closing the Gap benefit PrEP, you can get PrEP:

  • $39.50 for a month’s supply
  • $6.40 (with a health Care Card) for a month’s supply.

2. GET PREP FROM ONLINE PHARMACIES 

It is possible to obtain PrEP through online pharmacies.

You can legally import PrEP for personal use (up to three months’ supply) from an overseas supplier under Australia’s Personal Importation Scheme for Medicines (IPU).

A month course of PrEP is available online for as low as $24 a month (if you order a three month supply – cost includes delivery). Currently the cheapest online pharmacies are Green Cross Pharmacy & DYNAMIX INTERNATIONAL.

You will need to scan or photograph  your prescription and upload it to one of the pharmacies listed below

  • No Medicare is card required when ordering from online pharmacies.
  • The CTG incentive is not valid for Online Pharmacy orders                   

Click Tarriaki’s image to read her PrEP story

Click Greg’s image to read his PrEP story

PrEP Online Pharmacies

GREEN CROSS PHARMACY

$21 a month for TENOF EM (if ordering a three month supply)

Also available RICOVIR EM and TENVIR EM (Please not pricing in is US dollars).

– cost includes delivery.

Delivery time 10 – 14 working days.

DYNAMIX INTERNATIONAL

$21 a month for TENOF EM (if ordering a three month supply)

– cost includes delivery.

Also available RICOVIR EM and TENVIR EM

Delivery time 4 – 7 working days.

ALL DAY CHEMIST

$78 a month for TENOF EM

– cost includes delivery.

 

 

 

Delivery time approximately 14 working days.

AIDS DRUGS ONLINE

$90 a month for TENVIR EM

– cost includes delivery.

 

 

Delivery time approximately 21 working days.

3. PAN PrEP ASSISTANCE COUPON SCHEME.

If you are on a low income or have some financial hardship then you may be eligible for help purchasing PrEP.
For more information click below.
APPLY HERE

0