Cancer Prevention Vaccination Schedule Simplified

HPV vaccination reduces cervical cancer risks
HPV vaccinations
by Tumisu P.
Geneva (Precision Vaccinations)

Parents concerned about their children's risk of being diagnosed with certain cancers have an important vaccination decision to make next year. Should they follow new guidance published by the World Health Organization (WHO)?

Or adhere to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) current multi-step human papovavirus (HPV) vaccination schedule?

As of February 2022, the CDC recommends two doses of the 9-valent HPV vaccine for all adolescents at age 11 or 12.

Numerous scientific studies have shown that two doses of the HPV vaccine given to people aged 9–14 years, at least six months apart, were as good or better than three. 

HPV vaccination is essential since about 85% of people will get an HPV infection in their lifetime.

But the uptake of any HPV vaccine has been historically lower than other adolescent vaccinations.

For example, a study published in the journal Vaccines in November 2022 found the average up-to-date HPV coverage in 05/2021–09/2021 (54.8%) remained lower than the pre-pandemic level (58.5%). 

The WHO's new recommendation was published on December 16, 2022, in the Weekly Epidemiological Record No 50, 2022, 97, 645–672.

The WHO's new data indicates that between 2019 and 2021, coverage of the first dose of HPV vaccination fell by 25% to 15%.

Its primary focus is preventing cervical cancer, given the role of prophylactic HPV vaccination as a foundational pillar of the WHO Global Strategy to Accelerate the Elimination of Cervical Cancer as a Public Health Problem.

The WHO now recommends:

  • A one or two-dose schedule for girls aged 9-14 years,
  • A one or two-dose schedule for girls and women aged 15-20 years,
  • Two doses with a 6-month interval for women older than 21 years.

It is estimated that implementing this WHO strategy could prevent 60 million cervical cancer cases and 45 million HPV-related fatalities over the next 100 years. 

The CDC suggests one tactic to enhance HPV vaccinations by bundling adolescent vaccines, including HPV vaccines, on the same day.

"Now that your child is 11, they need three vaccines to help protect against meningitis, HPV cancers, and whooping cough. So we'll give these shots during today's visit. Do you have any questions about these vaccines" suggests the CDC.

In the U.S., HPV vaccines are generally available at clinics and pharmacies.

PrecisionVaccinations publishes fact-checked, research-based vaccine information manually curated for mobile readers.

Disclosures: Data was sourced from the WHO, CDC, and HPV vaccine news sources. Vaccine prices are sourced from InstantRx™. This news article is not paid content.

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