What is PEP?

PEP stands for post-exposure prophylaxis. It means taking antiretroviral medicines (ARVs) after being
potentially exposed to HIV to prevent becoming infected.

PEP must be started within 72 hours after a recent possible exposure to HIV, but the sooner you start
PEP, the better it will work. Every hour counts.

If you’re prescribed PEP, you’ll need to take it once or twice daily for 28 days, and you have to complete
the 28-day course.

PEP is highly effective in preventing HIV when administered correctly, but not 100% effective.

Is PEP right for me?
If you are HIV-negative or do not know your status, and in the last 72 hours you think you may have been exposed to HIV during sex (the condom broke), shared needles or were sexually assaulted, talk to your health care provider or an emergency room doctor about PEP right away.
PEP should be used only in emergency situations and must be started within 72 hours after a recent possible exposure to HIV
PEP is not a substitute for regular use of proven HIV prevention methods, such as PrEP, which means taking HIV medicines daily to lower your chance of getting infected; using condoms the right way every time you have sex; and using only your own new sterile needles and works (cotton, water) every time you inject.

PEP is effective, but not 100%, so continue to use condoms with sex partners and safe injection practices. These strategies can protect you from being exposed to HIV and reduce the chances of transmitting HIV to others.
References: https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/basics/pep.html ; www.sahivsoc.org
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