I need help or advice about HIV

Find out about HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), how to protect yourself, medication if you’ve been exposed to HIV (PEP) and testing for HIV in Southwark. 

What is HIV

You can find out more about what HIV is, and how to protect yourself.

PEP (Post Exposure Prophylaxis) emergency medication for exposure to HIV

PEP is a course of HIV medication that may stop someone developing HIV infection if they have been exposed to the virus. You need to be treated with PEP within 72 hours of exposure.

How to get PEP in south London 

If you are concerned you have been exposed to the HIV virus, please contact one of the local sexual health clinics in south-east London. You will need to be treated within 72 hours of exposure, ideally within the first 24 hours. You can contact a local sexual health clinic to receive treatment.

Get tested for HIV online or in person 

You can order free STI tests online through Sexual Health London, a confidential service. You can also contact a local sexual health clinic to get tested for HIV. 

PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) to reduce the risk of getting HIV

PrEP is a drug taken by HIV-negative people before and after sex that reduces the risk of getting HIV. PrEP works by stopping HIV from getting into your body and making copies of itself (replicating). You'll only be protected from HIV infection if there are high enough levels of PrEP in your body, so it's important to take it correctly.

PrEP can be used by anyone from a community or group that is most at risk of HIV, or people who have sex with people from those networks.

How to get PrEP in south London

PrEP is now available for free on the NHS in England from sexual health clinics. To access PrEP, please contact one of the local sexual health clinics in south-east London.

The National Sexual Health Helpline

If you'd like to talk to someone about a sexual health issue, call the National Sexual Health Helpline free on 0300 123 7123. Your call will be treated with sensitivity and in strict confidence. The Sexual Health Helpline is open Monday to Friday, from 9am to 8pm and Saturday and Sunday, from 11am to 4pm. You can also visit the Sexwise website.

Page last updated: 22 August 2023


Privacy settings