Adequate adherence to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is critical to prevent HIV infection, but accurately measuring adherence remains challenging. We compared two biological [blood drug concentrations in plasma and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC)] and two self-reported measures (facilitated recall to clinicians and self-report in online surveys) and identified predictors of daily PrEP adherence among gay and bisexual men (GBM) in their first 12 months on PRELUDE, an open-label, single-arm PrEP demonstration project in New South Wales, Australia. 327 participants were enrolled; 263 GBM attended their 12-month follow-up visit (81% retention). Overall, 91% of blood samples had plasma drug concentrations indicative of taking 7 pills/week, and 99% had protective drug concentrations (≥ 4 pills/week). Facilitated recall to clinicians identified 99% of participants with protective adherence as measured by PBMC drug concentrations. Daily adherence measured by facilitated recall was associated with behavioural practices including group sex (aOR 1.33, 95% CI 1.15–1.53, p < 0.001). Retained participants maintained high adherence to daily PrEP over 12 months, confirmed by four different measures. Facilitated recall to clinicians is a suitable measure for assessing PrEP adherence in populations engaged in care where there is established trust and rapport with patients. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02206555.
- Blood tenofovir concentrations
- Facilitated recall
- Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases