Health care providers in South Carolina often overlook indicators that patients are good candidates for Truvada (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate/emtricitabine) as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), aidsmap reports.

Publishing their findings in Clinical Infectious Diseases, researchers conducted a retrospective study of 885 people age 13 and older who were diagnosed with recently contracted HIV in South Carolina between 2013 and 2016.

Two thirds of the cohort had visited a health care facility during the period before their HIV diagnosis—doing so an average of seven times. Latinos made only a few of these visits. Eighty-four percent of the visits were to hospital emergency rooms. Forty-two percent of the visits included individuals who were uninsured or who paid for their health care services out of pocket, while 36 percent included those with public insurance and 18 percent included those with private insurance.

Individuals who had such missed opportunities to be prescribed PrEP were more likely to be female, Black than white and younger than 30.

One in four of the cohort members visited a health care facility because of gonorrhea or syphilis infection and 29 percent did so because of those two sexually transmitted infections plus chlamydia.

To read the aidsmap article, click here.

To read the study abstract, click here.