26 Jun PrEP legal battle to feature on BBC on Wednesday night
At 9pm on 27 June 2018 BBC2 will screen an hour-long documentary on the battle by campaigners and organisations for the NHS to fund PrEP. The case brought by National AIDS Trust with our help will be featured, along with interviews with our lawyers.
On 2 August 2016, the High Court decided that NHS England’s controversial decision that it did not have the power to fund Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV was wrong; and in September that year the Court of Appeal upheld that decision.
PrEP has been described as a “game-changing” drug, following trials which have unequivocally demonstrated that it reduces the risk of transmission of HIV. After over 18 months of collaborative work involving the National Aids Trust (NAT) and many others, NHS England suddenly and unexpectedly pulled the plug on the well-formulated plan for PrEP to be provided on the NHS for high-risk groups, claiming that it didn’t have the legal power to commission PrEP because local authorities should do so, as it is a public health intervention that is not provided to people who are infected with HIV. Local authorities made it clear that they would not be in a position to provide PrEP due to lack of specialist expertise and bargaining power with pharmaceutical companies, and lack of funds.
NAT instructed DPG to apply for judicial review of this decision, and the Court found in NAT’s favour.