PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) can prevent HIV infection in the first hours after infection. PEP must be started within the first 48 hours – the sooner, the safer the protection.

How does the PEP work?

After clarification of your current HIV status (interview, HIV rapid test), you will receive medication equal to HIV therapy, which you will take daily for 30 days. These are intended to prevent the HIV virus from spreading and multiplying in the body.

When is a PEP useful?

PEP is usually done when you have had unprotected sex (anal or vaginal) with a partner who

is highly likely to be HIV positive (= belongs to a population group particularly affected by HIV infection, with prevalence of undiagnosed or untreated HIV infection >1%).

Is HIV positive, with detectable virus in the blood.

Other situations in which PEP may be useful include

  • Medical indication after needlestick injury
  • Condom failure during anal sex with a partner with unknown HIV status
  • After sharing a syringe with an unknown person

No PEP recommended

  • If your sex partner is HIV-positive but on therapy and the virus has been undetectable in the blood for at least ½ year.
  • For unprotected oral sex

How and where do I get PEP?

After a risk situation, report as soon as possible to checkin Zollhaus or another PEP emergency center and, if possible, bring your sex partner with you. If you both do a rapid test and the result is negative (in the absence of HIV risk in the last 6 weeks), no PEP is needed.

At the start of PEP, checks of various blood values are important. After 2 weeks, further examinations become necessary. You can take a final safe HIV test 10 weeks after the end of therapy.