Number of Teens Getting HPV Vaccine is Little, Says Study

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Teens Getting HPV Vaccine: HPV Vaccine is considered to be the crucial one in women. There are many advertising going on to get the vaccine while you are a teen. But, there is a lack of awareness among women to the vaccine at particular time and give it a miss. In United States, the vaccination rate against the sexually transmitted HPV virus has risen, but much improvement is needed, a Blue Cross Blue Shield study finds.

The same situation is being seen in India as well. Despite 96% of patients suffering from cervical cancer being HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) positive in the state of Karnataka, HPV vaccination has still not been included in government’s regular immunisation programme. Health and Family Welfare department of Karnataka government currently provides vaccine for preventable diseases.

The commercial HPV vaccination is available at private hospitals costing `3000-6000; which is beyond the reach of most patients, especially those in rural areas. This vaccine is given thrice in six months to girls aged 9-13 years. The National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) had granted permission earlier to introduce the HPV vaccine in the Universal Immunisation Programme (UIP).

HPV is a group of virus which can cause penile cancer in men, cervical, vaginal, anal and vulvar cancer in women. It can also lead to throat and rectum cancer irrespective of gender. The virus is transmitted through intimate contact and even spreads through contaminated toilets and use of unhygienic pads. The commercial vaccines were made available to the Indian market in 2008, but were limited to private sector.

A national immunisation programme (NIP) is the organizational component of Health Ministry charged with preventing disease, disability, and death from vaccine-preventable disease in children and adults. It operates within the framework of overall health policy. The official from Health and Family Welfare department said that it is difficult for the state government to provide this kind of vaccination because of the cost.

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