Program Schedule

Knowledge and Perception of PrEP Among Two Cohorts of Infectious Disease Providers

Session: Poster Abstract Session: HIV Prevention Strategies
Saturday, October 11, 2014
Room: The Pennsylvania Convention Center: IDExpo Hall BC
Background:   The FDA recently approved tenofovir/emtricitabine as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to prevent acquisition of HIV among adults.  The CDC established guidance on prescribing PrEP. However, there is a paucity of data on how providers should implement PrEP into clinical practice, provider knowledge related to PrEP, and its cost-effectiveness.

Methods: A voluntary, anonymous survey was conducted to evaluate the current knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions of PrEP among two groups of primarily infectious disease providers.  The link to the 34-question survey was emailed to both the Greater Washington Infectious Disease Society (GWIDS) and the Armed Forces Infectious Disease Society (AFIDS).  This survey assessed provider demographics and the volume of HIV-infected patients in their practice in addition to their knowledge, prescribing patterns, and opinions regarding PrEP. 

Results: There were 105 responses – 20 (19%) were members of GWIDS, 58 (55%) were members of AFIDS, and 27 (25.7%) were part of both groups.  All were physicians, and 94% were adult infectious disease specialists.  The majority (60%) of knowledge questions were answered incorrectly. Of the respondents, 36 (34.3%) spent >25% of their time in HIV care.  Those who spent >25% of their time in HIV care had a significantly higher percentage of correct answers in the knowledge component of the survey.  Sixty-two (67%) respondents felt that the current literature supports the use of PrEP, 12 (13%) did not think the literature supports its use, and 18 (19.5%) were undecided.   When asked whether the cost of PrEP was considered justifiable, only 23 (25%) said yes, while 35 (38%) said no and 34 (37%) were undecided. 

Conclusion: There is a significant amount of uncertainty that remains regarding the use of PrEP.  This survey demonstrates that knowledge related to the use of PrEP is lacking and suggests training is warranted to ensure providers become familiar with CDC guidance.  Given the lack of knowledge amongst providers who spent <25% of their time caring for HIV patients, organizations should consider restricting its use to providers who spend >25% of their time caring for HIV patients.  Only a quarter of surveyed providers feel the cost is justified.  Further research in this area is necessary to explore options for more cost effective methods of HIV prevention.

Kerry Wilson, MD1, Charles Magee, MD MPH2, Timothy Whitman, DO1, Roseanne Ressner, DO3 and Joshua Hartzell, MD3, (1)Infectious Disease, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, (2)Internal Medicine, Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, (3)Infectious Diseases, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD


K. Wilson, None

C. Magee, None

T. Whitman, None

R. Ressner, None

J. Hartzell, None

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