Pre-exposure Prophylaxis Awareness Among Gay and Other Men Who Have Sex With Men in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada




Lachowsky, Nathan J.
Lin, Sally Y.
Hull, Mark W.
Cui, Zishan
Sereda, Paul
Jollimore, Jody
Rich, Ashleigh
Montaner, Julio S. G.
Roth, Eric A.
Hogg, Robert S.

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AIDS and Behavior


Men who have sex with men (MSM) account for approximately half of Canada’s new HIV infections. Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), a recently established and effective HIV prevention tool for MSM is currently not approved nor publicly funded. We recruited MSM via respondent-driven sampling to complete a self-administered computer-based interview. Stratified by HIV status, multivariable logistic regression identified factors associated with PrEP awareness. Of 673 participants, 102/500 (20.9%) HIV-negative and 63/173 (26.5%) HIV-positive men were aware of PrEP, but none had used it. One third of PrEP-aware MSM spoke about it with friends or sex partners. Self-declared knowledge was limited. Factors associated with PrEP awareness varied by HIV status, but included greater HAART optimism for HIV-negative MSM. Among HIV-negative MSM, being PrEP unaware was associated with younger age, not always having condoms, and preferring receptive versus insertive anal sex. Future longitudinal research should identify early adopters of PrEP and its associated impacts.


The authors would like to thank the Momentum Health Study participants, office staff and community advisory board, as well as our community partner agencies, Health Initiative for Men, YouthCo HIV and Hep C Society, and Positive Living Society of BC.


HIV/AIDS, primary prevention, pre-exposure prophylaxis, health promotion


Lachowsky, N. J., Lin, S. Y., Hull, M. W., Cui, Z., Sereda, P., Jollimore, J., Rich, A., Montaner, J. S. G., Roth, E. A., Hogg, R. S., & Moore, D. M. (2016). “Pre-exposure Prophylaxis Awareness Among Gay and Other Men Who Have Sex With Men in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.” AIDS and Behavior, 20(7), 1408-1422.