HIV PEP and PrEP

PEP Providing Clinics Nearby

You can walk in without an appointment for PEP and emergency contraception at:

Both open Monday to Thursday, 8am to 7pm | Friday, 8am to 3pm | Saturday, 9am to 3pm.

Find more clinics on the Central and North West London NHS website (external link).

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What is PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis)?

PEP is a 28 day course of treatment with anti-HIV medications which can reduce the risk of HIV infection after contact with the virus by approximately 80%.

If you are HIV negative and think you have been exposed to HIV within the last 72 hours then you can walk in to local sexual health clinics - Mortimer Market Centre or Archway Clinic (details above). If these clinics are closed, you can walk into any hospital emergency department to be started on PEP.

PEP works best the sooner after contact it is taken and should ideally be started within 24 hours.

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What is PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis)?

PrEP is a combination of two HIV medications (tenofovir and emtricitabine) which are taken to prevent HIV infection for people who are at high risk.

Before stating PrEP, it is important to discuss PrEP with a sexual health professional, and you will also need to have an HIV, Hepatitis B and kidney test. You should check there are no interaction with any other medication you may take.

  • People at very high risk of HIV may be eligible for free NHS funded PrEP by joining the PrEP Impact study (external link)
  • You can buy generic PrEP in London at 56 Dean Street’s PrEP Shop (external link)
  • Some people choose to buy non-branded generic PrEP from overseas pharmacies - this is legal if you are over 18 and buying up to three months supply for personal use - and have regular monitoring appointments at their local Sexual Health Clinic

PrEP can be taken as a once daily regime. You need to take the tablet around the same time every day and it takes 7 days before protection starts. If you decide to stop PrEP, you must take at least 2 doses after the last risk before you stop.

PrEP can also be taken as an event-based regime. You need to be able to predict when you will have sex in order to take PrEP this way. It is only suitable for people without active Hepatitis B having anal sex. 2 Tablets are taken 2-24 hours before sex, then you must continue with 1 tablet every 24 hours after the first dose for at least 2 doses after the last risk before you stop.

You can find out more at the Mortimer Market or Archway Centre clinics, or the Terrence Higgins Trust website (external link).

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Page last updated:

19 January 2021