Black and white image of a medication bottle laying open on a surface, with 5 pills spilling out

Monitoring HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) uptake in Australia: Issue 4

This report uses data extracted from every PrEP prescription supplied in Australia through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2021. Data are presented on the total number of people who have ever initiated PBS-subsidised PrEP, as well as the number of people dispensed PrEP within each quarter. These data are disaggregated by age, and by state or territory of patient residence. This report also includes a section investigating the effect of COVID-19-related lockdowns on presents monthly dispensing data by jurisdiction since COVID-19-related lockdowns began.

Key findings
  • As of 31 March 2021, 44,798 people had received PBS-subsidised PrEP at least once
  • COVID-19 related lockdowns led to a decrease in the number of people receiving PrEP, from 21,912 in Q1 2020 to 17,135 in Q2 2020. 
  • This decline was evident in all states and territories and in Victoria, dispensing levels remained lower for a longer period reflecting the additional lockdowns in 2020. 
  • The number of people dispensed PrEP recovered to 2019 levels in states and territories by March 2021.