Free access to the new HPV vaccine

FEDERAL Member for Forrest Nola Marino has welcomed a move by the federal government to provide free access to the new Human Papilomavirus (HPV) vaccine for young people from the start of 2018.

The new Gardasil 9 vaccine will offer protection against nine strains of HPV (up from four), expanding protection against the virus and improving the health of our young people.

Gardasil 9 is the most comprehensive and effective HPV vaccine ever and it only requires two doses (down from three), making it easier for young people to receive the full schedule and be protected.

Mrs Marino said that as part of the national immunisation program, the vaccine will be provided through school based programs to all 12 to 13 year old boys and girls in years seven or eight.

“Having the HPV vaccine through a school based program maximises protection for girls and boys,” Mrs Marino said.

“For many years schools have been used for many years to delivering successful immunisation programs, including pertussis (whooping cough), varicella (chicken pox), and Gardasil.” The new vaccine will help protect girls and women aged nine to 26 against cervical, vaginal, vulvar, and anal cancers and genital warts caused by nine types of HPV.

For boys and men aged nine to 26, the vaccine will protect against anal cancer and genital warts caused by those same HPV types.

Australia was the first country to introduce a free national HPV program, starting with girls in 2007, followed by boys in 2013.

The federal government committed $460 million in 2017-18 for vaccine purchases and activities to promote immunisation uptake.

Source: Bunbury Mail.