The British Medical Journal has published the results of a prospective cohort study that aimed to assess the feasibility and acceptability of delivering a human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to adolescent girls. The BBC has reported the results of this study.
The study collected vaccination data for 2,817 girls aged 12 and 13 years old who attended 36 secondary schools in two primary care trusts in Greater Manchester. The vaccine should be administered on three occasions at 0, 1 and 6 months over one school year.
Vaccine uptake was 70.6% for the first dose and 68.5% for the second dose. The main reasons given for parents' refusal of vaccination were insufficient information about the vaccine and its long term safety.
The Department of Health has made a training slide set available on the NHS Immunisation website. This information can be used to reassure teenage girls and their parents about the benefits of this vaccination and current safety data.
Action: The national vaccination programme is due to start this autumn. Clinicians should support this programme by giving information when asked about the vaccination.