Medi-Cal Increases Accessibility Of Truvada, Eliminates Monthly HIV Testing Requirement


California's Medi-Cal, a state welfare program serving low-income families, seniors, persons with disabilities, children in foster care, pregnant women, and certain low-income adults, has made it easier for the people they serve to have access to Truvada as PrEP. First, they've eliminated the requirement that patients be tested monthly for HIV; the requirement that patients be provided with condoms was lifted; and the requirement that the patient's doctor has to receive Medi-Cal's permission before writing a prescription.

The decisions to lift these requirements came after discussions between Mike Wofford, Medi-Cal’s pharmacy policy branch chief, and representatives from AIDS Project Los Angeles, the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center, and Project Inform. Removing Medi-Cal's required approval made for one less step patients would have to go through to get started on a regimen, and the relaxing of the condom and HIV testing requirements came after the three groups asserted that they were "not necessarily real world conditions."


  1. keating says

    that’s great for low-income people, but for middle-income people the drug is still expensive, and a lot of insurance plans won’t pay for it.

    You have to be a whore to be on Truvada — that’s the only way to afford it!

  2. says

    Behind this push for Truvada, my sensitive Stuffed Animal snout detects the influence of both Big Pharma and the dumbass anti-condom lobby! But I always did think mandatory monthly HIV testing was a bad idea.

  3. says

    Behind this push for Truvada, my sensitive Stuffed Animal snout detects the influence of both Big Pharma and the dumbass anti-condom lobby! But I always did think mandatory monthly HIV testing was a bad idea.

  4. vaccine says

    Truvada is still new. It hasn’t proven itself like women’s birth control pills has for preventing unwanted pregnancy(99% effective vs 89% with condom ). Of course, the poor are always great resource for lab rats.

  5. says

    can you imagine what a different world we’d be living in had Jonas Salk patented his cure for polio?

    dear Medical World – your job should be to put yourselves out of a job. Do you want to eliminate HIV or do you want to make money off of people living with HIV? you cannot have both.

  6. Arrow says

    Hope for another sentimental play about this issue. The last one was lost on this generation.

  7. Bill S. says

    In the absence of condom use, Truvada will only prevent the spread of HIV – and only if it is used consistently. The side effects will be highly toxic over the longer term, to say nothing about the continued spread of Herpes, HPV, and other STDs – and whatever unknown virus/disease is lurking in the shadows.

    Condoms are cheap and effective. They, not Truvada, should be at the center of any campaign for safer sex.

  8. Bill S. says

    Little Kiwi, I agree that both Truvada and Condoms should be available. Making Truvada affordable is a worthy goal. But there are too many in our community who are going to use Truvada as an excuse to ditch condoms, beyond those who’ve already started barebacking. I’ve lost too many friends to count. Most died in the early 90s, when the triple drug treatment was introduced there was hope but people were still cautious. But within the last few years friends have started seroconverting and one has died. History repeats itself, and it’s not a history I’d care to relive.

  9. Paul R says

    Well that’s interesting, seeing as how CA put me on Medical last fall by accident and hasn’t been willing to take me off it despite my best efforts. Guess it’s time to go stock up!

  10. ElCid says

    Lift requirement on provision of condoms… funny… I really think the whole Truvada thing is a shame. The whole health system is paying for prescription drugs for people (like me) just because they want to do it raw.

    I want to be very clear: health care expenditures will increase nationwide because of this and it will ONLY be our fault. Condoms work, Truvada works, condoms are cheap, truvada is SUPER EXPENSIVE for the health care system

    It should be a matter of cost-effectiveness. Truvada is not cost-effective. Condoms are.

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