An opportunity 'to eliminate a cancer': Boosting HPV vaccination rates starts in pediatrician's office, experts say
In her children’s pediatrician’s office two years ago, Lockport mother Kelly DiFilippo declined the HPV vaccine for her oldest daughter, and “no one batted an eye,” she said.
But when it was time for her second daughter’s sixth-grade physical last winter, DiFilippo’s refusal of the vaccine was met with a different reaction from the same doctor.
“My pediatrician said, ‘I really want you to think about this,’” DiFilippo said. “She really kind of put the pressure on me.”
As HPV vaccination rates continue to lag behind other, less controversial immunizations, medical experts are urging pediatricians to stress the importance of the vaccine just as strongly as they do other shots and to tout the link to cancer prevention.
As part of the effort, the American Cancer Society is rolling out a public campaign this summer, pledging to eventually eradicate cancers related to HPV, a sexually transmitted disease, through use of the vaccine for adolescents, as well as screenings for adults who came of age before it became available in 2006.
Source: Chicago Tribune