A pile of blue pills against an orange backdrop.

Sex, drugs and activism: making HIV treatment as prevention available in the UK

On 10 April 2017, the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) announced that PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) – the use of HIV treatment in people who are HIV-negative to prevent HIV – would soon be available on the NHS. This is a landmark decision for the use of HIV treatment as prevention in the UK, making Scotland the first – and currently, only – country to provide PrEP through the NHS.

Image of a patient's arm with an IV, lying in a hospital bed with a nurse by their side.

What is the patient experience?

While a concern with how people experience health and illness has long been a topic of interest in Medical Sociology and Anthropology, the emergence of the patient experience alongside quality and safety as a key measure of healthcare services is a more recent phenomenon. Yet despite its increasing prominence, what counts as a patient experience and indeed how these experiences can and should be counted remains up for debate.