As HIV cases in Permian Basin rise, health care officials look f - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

As HIV cases in Permian Basin rise, health care officials look for solution to curb numbers in drug

(Source: KWES) (Source: KWES)

It’s not a cure.

“We do not want any new cases,” said infectious disease physician, Dr. Satish Mocherla.

On Monday, healthcare officials in West Texas and the Permian Basin learned more about the pre-exposure drug, TRUVADA.

“If you are in a relationship where a person is HIV negative and his or her partner is HIV positive, you can take this drug reduce the transmission,” said Mocherla.

Under the Truvada plan, it’s one pill a day, the person has to test HIV negative before starting and be tested every 90 days.

“This is an additional weapon in the hands of physicians and other health care providers,” said Mocherla.

Dr. Mocherla added the eye popping new cases of HIV in the Midland and Odessa area shows the need for people to think about the drug.

“It used to be the disease was not particularly seen, noticed, or talked about has come back I would say with a vengeance,” said Mocherla.

He and others believe with education and safe practices the number of cases can go back down to zero.

“It is really a partnership. It’s not a partnership between two individuals, it’s a partnership between the two individuals who are involved and also with their health care provider,” said Mocherla.

Dr. Mocherla says the drug is offered locally but you need to get it prescribed by a doctor.

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