Bill would give Illinois youth access to PrEP

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Illinois State Capitol in Springfield. (Photo via Good Free Photos)

Illinois State Capitol in Springfield. (Photo via Good Free Photos)

SPRINGFIELD — A bill waiting for Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s signature would give Illinois teens as young as 12 access to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP).

NPR Illinois reported that the bill was sponsored by State Rep. Lamont Robinson Jr. (D-Chicago). It would allow youth to get access to PrEP without needing a parent’s or guardian’s permission.

From NPR Illinois:

“Unfortunately, within our youth in the black and brown community, we’re seeing an increase in HIV rates, and so this bill saves lives essentially,” Robinson says. “It is a safety net.”

He says the measure would help homeless youth and kids who can’t talk to their parents about sexual activity. 

Advocates have pushed for the measure because HIV infection rates are on the rise among the young, sexually active population, and there was confusion in the medical community over whether a law giving minors permission to get tested for HIV also covered PREP, according to Aditi Singh, director of government relation for the AIDS Foundation of Chicago.

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