PrEP Access and Coverage Act

What is H.R. 3815, the PrEP Access and Coverage Act?

Introduced by Representative Schiff in July of 2019, H.R. 3815 will increase access to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to reduce the transmission of HIV and protect LGBTQ+ community healthcare. It will do this by expanding access to cost-free PrEP and ancillary services for all individuals, including individuals who do not have health insurance.

Why do we need the PrEP Access and Coverage Act?

Prep is a daily antiretroviral medication that helps prevent individuals from acquiring HIV. Daily PrEP use reduces the risk of getting HIV from sex by over 90 percent. It reduces the risk of getting HIV from injection drug use by over 70 percent.


This legislation will expand access to cost-free PrEP and ancillary services for all individuals, including individuals who do not have health insurance, to take steps towards eliminating HIV transmission. 

  • The PrEP Access and Coverage Act would require all private and public insurance plans to cover the HIV prevention pill and related services with no out-of-pocket costs for patients. 

  • The bill would also enhance access for the uninsured. 

  • It would fund a grant program to assist states, territories, and tribal communities in promoting access to PrEP for the uninsured and reducing disparities in access to the prevention medication. 

  • The grants would also support outreach to physicians and other providers designed to increase understanding of PrEP and the recommended clinical practices for providing care. 

  • The legislation also bars companies selling life insurance, disability insurance, and long-term care insurance from denying coverage to or charging higher premiums for people taking PrEP. 

  • Additional grants would be made available for a public education campaign to reduce disparities in access to and use of PrEP through education—particularly in high-need communities in which PrEP is underutilized—about the safety and efficacy of the drug and to combat stigma surrounding PrEP usage.

With the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimating that approximately 1,100,000 people in the United States are living with HIV, it is clear the prevalence of this disease in our country. In 2017, there were 38,281 new diagnoses of HIV in the United States.


HIV disproportionately impacts gay and bisexual men, transgender women, and, in particular, people of color. For example, in 2017 approximately 66 percent of new HIV diagnoses were among gay and bisexual men, 43 percent of new HIV diagnoses were among Black people, and 26 percent of new HIV diagnoses were among Latinx people. Recent studies suggest that transgender women are up to 49 times more likely to be diagnosed with HIV than the general population. Members of communities at the intersections of these groups are most heavily impacted.


Many individuals at risk of exposure to HIV do not use PrEP. Of the approximately 1,100,000 people in the United States who could benefit from PrEP, only 7 percent, or 78,360 individuals, filled prescriptions for the drug in 2016.


PrEP usage is inconsistent across racial and gender lines. In 2016, PrEP users were 68.7 percent White, 11.2 percent Black, and 13.1 percent Latinx. However, individuals eligible for PrEP were 26.3 percent White, 43.7 percent Black, and 24.7 percent Latinx. Additionally, only 2.1 percent of women eligible for PrEP received a prescription in 2016.


Access barriers to PrEP remain. Ancillary services necessary to maintain the PrEP regime, including subsequent provider visits, clinical testing, and other services, can remain a cost-burden on patients. Additionally, the new recommendations are not linked to coverage requirements for individuals with other types of insurance, such as Medicare or Medicaid.

View our issue one-pager here!

What can I do to take action to get this passed?

Call Your Senators and Urge Them to support H.R. 3815. We need to garner more support in the House so that we can pass this. Use your power as a constituent to sway their support! Find your House Representative and their numbers here!

Here is a sample script to use when calling your Representative: I am a constituent as well as a member of Generation Ratify, the youth-led movement to support Ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment and advance gender equality. I am calling you about H.R. 3815, the PrEP Access and Coverage Act. 

Introduced by Representative Schiff in July of 2019, H.R. 3815 will increase access to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to reduce the transmission of HIV and protect LGBTQ+ community healthcare. It will do this by expanding access to cost-free PrEP and ancillary services for all individuals, including individuals who do not have health insurance.

With the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimating that approximately 1,100,000 people in the United States are living with HIV, it is clear the prevalence of this disease in our country. Of the approximately 1,100,000 people in the United States who could benefit from PrEP, only 7 percent, or 78,360 individuals, filled prescriptions for the drug in 2016

 

I urge the Representative to support H.R. 3815, the PrEP Access and Coverage Act. 

Email Your Representative and Urge Them to support it! As mentioned above, we need to put the pressure on the House to pass this. Use this form to send an email straight to your Representative!

Call other organizers to contact their Representatives. After contacting your Representatives, help mobilize other young people to contact their's by phone-banking our registered members across the country using this phone-bank!

Talk about it on social media. Posting on social media is a great way to not only spread the word and drive people to action, but to also put pressure on our elected officials. Tweet it out by clicking this link!

Get out the vote for pro-gender equality candidates. This election decides the fate of gender equality legislation. We need a pro-gender equality majority in both the House and the Senate. Help us get there by empowering the youth vote and advocating for leaders that value equality for our Elect Equal Rights Campaign.

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