CDC Issues Report Recommending Condoms, Testing, PrEP

CDC Issues Report Recommending Condoms, Testing, PrEP
Rhett Pardon

ATLANTA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention today said that the adult film industry is well suited for implementation of a combination of HIV prevention strategies that include the consistent use of condoms, performer testing and PrEP.

The CDC made the recommendation in a study that looked at occupational HIV transmission among gay male adult film performers in 2014.

The report followed the occupational and nonoccupational exposure to and transmission of HIV among 17 contacts of a male adult film performer known as Patient A.

Release of the paper in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report comes just one week before Cal/OSHA decides whether to impose new regulations for adult film productions.

The proposed update to the current California law — § 5193.1 — would mandate barrier protection, including condoms, to shield performers from contact with bloodborne pathogens, or other potentially infectious material during the production of films. The update goes to a full vote before Cal/OSHA’s rulemaking body.

The CDC also emphasized in the report that HIV can be transmitted during the 14-day period after a negative test, before a positive test is obtained.

“[A]s demonstrated here and previously among heterosexual adult film performers [in 2004 during an HIV transmission cluster that involved former adult star Darren James and three female performers], testing alone is not sufficient to prevent occupational HIV transmission,” the CDC report’s authors said.

While the CDC said that PrEP significantly reduces the risk for HIV acquisition among HIV-negative persons at high risk, it also noted that PrEP is not an intervention “with which employers can ensure compliance, and should be used with condoms to protect against both HIV and other STIs.”

The CDC noted that there are implications for public health and the rights of workers in the filming of porn and that there are institutional challenges of developing adult film worker protection regulations on a national and global scale.

“Federal and state Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations delineate rights of employees and responsibilities of employers to ensure safe working conditions,” the CDC said.

“The adult film industry is well suited for implementation of combination HIV prevention strategies, including biomedical (HIV testing, treatment and PrEP, or preexposure prophylaxis), behavioral (consistent and correct use of condoms, facilitated by the use of a compatible lubricant), and regulatory interventions.”

A video of the CDC's results can be found here.

View CDC report