One dose of HPV vaccine offers solid protection against cervical cancer – WHO

NEWS DIGEST – World Health Organization (WHO), Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization (SAGE) stated that one dose of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) offers solid protection against cervical cancer.

This was disclosed on the official website of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Tuesday.

Dr. Alejandro Cravioto, Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization (SAGE) Chair, said that “The Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine is highly effective for the prevention of HPV serotypes 16 & 18, which cause 70% of cervical cancer”.

Cervical Cancer is a sexually transmissible disease that mostly affects women.

“More than 95% of cervical cancer is caused by sexually transmitted HPV, which is the fourth most common type of cancer in women globally with 90% of these women living in low- and middle-income countries”

“SAGE urges all countries to introduce HPV vaccines and prioritize multi-age cohort catch up of missed and older cohorts of girls. These recommendations will enable more girls and women to be vaccinated and thus preventing them from having cervical cancer and all its consequences throughout their lifetimes.” Dr. Cravioto Explained.

SAGE recommended that a one or two-dose schedule of HPV vaccine should be given to women between 9- 20years, while women above 21 should be given one or two-dose at six-month intervals.

Immunocompromised HIV Patients because of their immune deficiency are said to be given not less than 2- 3 doses of HPV vaccines.

“The elimination of Cervical Cancer is possible,” says Dr. Princess Nothemba (Nono) Simelela, WHO Assistant Director-General adding that “In 2020 the Cervical Cancer Elimination Initiative was launched to address several challenges including the inequity in vaccine access”.

“This single-dose recommendation has the potential to take us faster to our goal of having 90 percent of girls vaccinated by the age of 15 by 2030”. Princess Explained.

“We need political commitment complemented with equitable pathways for the accessibility of the HPV vaccine. Failure to do so is an injustice to the generation of girls and young women who may be at risk of cervical cancer.” Dr. Simelela said.

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