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HPV vaccine given to 44,000 girls - exceeding its target

The HSE has released details on the uptake rates for its 2011/2012 nationwide HPV vaccination campaign.

Image: Human Papilloma Virus via Shutterstock

THE HSE HAS seen uptake rates for the HPV vaccination exceed its target.

The Health Service Executive (HSE) said today that uptake rates for the 2011/2012 nationwide HPV vaccination campaign show that 44,000 girls received the vaccination.

Uptake rates have been strong and exceeded the targets set by the HSE, according to Dr Kevin Kelleher, HSE, Assistant National Director, Health Protection.

The routine programme for first year girls during 2011/2012 has been well received with an uptake rate of 86 per cent for the three vaccine doses, up from 82 per cent for 2010/2011 and well above the target of 80 per cent uptake rate set by the HSE for completed course of vaccinations.

He noted that in addition to this, a catch-up programme was introduced in 2011/2012 for all 6th year girls. The rate for completed vaccination courses for sixth year students was a 72 per cent uptake, 12 per cent above the target of 60 per cent.

He said that 97 per cent of first year girls – and 95 per cent of sixth years – who received a first dose of HPV vaccine completed the 3 dose schedule.

The free vaccination programme involved three doses of HPV vaccine (Gardasil) scheduled at 0, 2 and 6 months.

Figures broken down by area show that the percentage rate of take-up on the vaccine was roughly the same in each part of the country.

The South (95.5 per cent) and West (95.7 per cent) were marginally better overall for girls receiving all three doses in the catch up programme, while the West (98.1 per cent) was best when it came to first year students receiving all doses.

Schools

Most of the vaccinations were administered in schools by HSE immunisation teams. Some girls were invited to HSE clinics for their vaccine.

Prior to the vaccination, the HSE sent information packs and consent forms via the school to parents, guardians or the girls who were in 6th year.

The 2013/2014 programme will routinely provide vaccination for all first year girls. This is the final year of the catch up programme for sixth year students who have not already had the HPV vaccine.

For more information on the HPV vaccine programme and on cervical cancer visit www.hpv.ie.

Read: Women who smoke ‘at greater risk of HPV infection’>

Read: Screening uncovered 12 cases of mouth cancer last year>

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