Been Exposed to HIV?

If you think that you have been exposed to HIV it is very important that you act sooner rather than later. PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis) is a month-long course of drugs that help prevent HIV infection that is taken after a possible exposure to HIV.

The sooner someone starts PEP the better, but it must be started within 72 hour (3 days) after a possible exposure to HIV.

The most common reasons for needing PEP include:

  • Sex without a condom with a person who has, or might have, HIV
  • Condom breaking or slipping off during sex
  • Sharing needles or syringes with a person who has, or might have, HIV

Find out more about PEP at

You can access PEP from the Accident & Emergency Departments of Canberra and Calvary Hospitals, and during business hours at the Canberra Sexual Health Centre.

Please be aware that PEP is not a cure once HIV has established infection in the body. However, if taken within 72 hours of exposure to HIV, PEP can, in most cases, prevent HIV from establishing itself in the body.

We encourage people to act as quickly as possible to access PEP.

If you find that you need to access PEP more than once, you might want to consider PrEP.

HIV Resource Links & Downloads

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