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Illinois county joins statewide campaign to end HIV and AIDS

Moline Dispatch/Rock Island Argus

Tuesday, February 13, 2018  |  Article  |  

Health (49) , Health Care

MURPHYSBORO, Ill. (AP) — A southern Illinois county is providing a once-a-day pill that can help prevent infection for people at risk of HIV.

The Southern Illinoisan reports that the Jackson County Health Department is providing pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, as part of a statewide campaign called "Getting to Zero." The campaign aims to end HIV and AIDS in Illinois. Individuals who can benefit from the drug include those with an HIV-positive partner and people who have multiple partners.

The preventative drug is more than 90 percent effective for sexual transmission and 70 percent for needle transmission.

Paula Clark is the department's director of HIV Services. She says the state's lower 19 counties see about 26 new cases a year. Chicago also is seeing fewer than 1,000 cases a year for the first time in two decades.