HPV Vaccine Misinformation Must Be Rooted Out

I have called for a continued focus and outreach programme to encourage greater uptake of HPV vaccine.

Today (Monday March 4th) marks International HPV Awareness Day.

We are currently making progress on increasing the HPV vaccine take up, with approximately 65% of girls availing of the vaccine in schools. From September, it will also be made available to boys, an important step in preventing a number of different cancers.

On top of this, we are improving the vaccine itself, moving from the current 4-valent programme to the 9-valent vaccine, which will protect against an extra 5 types of cancer. This move will not only be a more effective vaccine but it will also be a cost saving measure.

Despite these positive developments and the progress we are making, there remains forces that would seek to see us fall backwards. For some time there has been an organized campaign to deliberately spread misinformation about the HPV vaccine and to scare students into rejecting the vaccine.

We must ensure that we do everything to push back against these baseless claims and continue the outreach to parents and students about the benefits of receiving the vaccine. Simply put, the HPV vaccine saves lives. The evidence and medical community is unanimous in its assertion that the vaccine is safe and prudent.

Prevention is always better than cure, the HPV vaccine helps prevent one of the most devastating diseases, cancer. It is incumbent on us to increase the take up rate.

© Catherine Noone – Dublin Senator 2011. | Wordpress Webdesign by: exSite