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NHS England blames possible legal action for decision not to fund HIV prevention pill

BMJ 2016; 352 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i1708 (Published 23 March 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;352:i1708
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. London

To the disappointment of clinicians and campaigners, NHS England has determined that its responsibilities do not include the commissioning of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV prevention.

HIV prevention is the job of local authorities, NHS England said, and it could be open to legal challenge if it were to include such prevention among specialised services competing for funds. Proponents of other specialised services displaced by PrEP might challenge the decision in the courts.

The decision has surprised many of those involved in HIV prevention, because NHS England had long been discussing the issue without such a legal obstacle being raised. In a comment on NHS England’s website, two …

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