Programming Connection

The PEP Program 

Clinique médicale l'Actuel
Montreal, Quebec
2010

Lessons Learned

  • The timing of receiving PEP is crucial: While PEP can be administered up to 72 hours after a person’s potential exposure to HIV, it’s best to administer it within 24 hours.
  • Targeted messaging and the use of word of mouth, posting flyers at community venues and advertising in community publications are good ways to promote a PEP program and increase awareness about PEP.
  • Inquiries into PEP increase on Mondays after people have engaged in using drugs and/or having high-risk sex over the weekend.
  • Adherence to PEP can be a challenge; clients must be fully briefed on the pros and cons of PEP prior to initiating treatment.
  • PEP programs offered to this target population did not attract repeat users and did not lead to abuse or inappropriate use of the service.
  • Offering PEP in context of integrated STI, HIV, HCV testing and counselling can be an effective way to promote prevention and education.