Also known as post exposure prophylaxis
Post exposure prophylaxis (PEP) is a HIV medication which is taken within 72 hours of possible exposure to HIV infection and is taken for 28 days.
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In most cases, PEP can stop HIV from establishing itself in the body and can prevent you from becoming HIV positive, but only if the PEP treatment is:
PEP can be one tablet taken daily or a combination of two or three tablets taken daily.
PEP is not a morning-after pill that makes it easy and safe to have sex without a condom. You must take the medication every day for 28 days for PEP to work. The treatment can cause side effects, such as nausea and headaches.
Find out more about PEP.
PEP is available from the Emergency Department of most public hospitals, sexual health clinics and some other general practice clinics which specialise in sexual health.
If the exposure happens ‘after hours’, Emergency Departments are often the best place to go to make sure you start PEP as soon as possible.
This fact sheet provides general sexual health information and is not intended to replace the need for a consultation with your doctor.
If you have concerns about your health, you should seek advice from your doctor.
If you require urgent care, you should go to your nearest Emergency Department or call 000.