SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California's governor has signed legislation that will allow patients to buy HIV prevention pills from pharmacists without a prescription.
Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday signed a law authorizing pharmacists to provide both pre-exposure and post-exposure drugs directly to patients.
Supporters of the legislation say California is the first state to make both available without a prescription, and the action will greatly reduce barriers to PrEP, or pre-exposure prophylaxis, and PEP, post-exposure prophylaxis.
Supporters say PEP significantly reduces the risk of infection if taken within 72 hours of exposure, but patients may not always be able to see a doctor in that time frame.
The law was co-authored by state Sen. Scott Wiener, a Democrat from San Francisco, who has publicly disclosed that he takes PrEP as an HIV prevention strategy.