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International News

Canada: Report Urges Long-Term Funding for HPV Vaccine

September 18, 2008

Toronto Public Health is recommending that city board of health officials urge the province to provide longer-term funding for a program to vaccinate eighth-grade girls against human papillomavirus (HPV). A report detailing that and other recommendations will be submitted to the board's Thursday meeting at city hall.

Last year, the federal government began funding a three-year program to help provinces provide the HPV shots. The vaccine is free for girls whose parents consent to the series. In Toronto schools last year, more than 13,000 eighth-grade girls were eligible, and 8,000 had received the first shot of the three-dose inoculation as of July 1 this year. Toronto public health officials want the program to continue beyond the three years during which the federal government is providing a subsidy.

"If we stop after three years we'll have a vaccine-preventable disease but won't be able to give [Gardasil] to girls who need it," said Dr. Vinita Dubey, an associate medical officer of health for Toronto. If girls had to get the shots at a doctor's office, uptake would be less, she said. "You have girls in schools whose parents sign the consent forms, and girls get it for free."

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Other recommendations in the report include lobbying the province to provide a "short-term HPV catch-up program" for females in ninth through 12th grades; and asking the federal government to commit to a "once eligible, always eligible" policy for eighth-grade girls up to their 18th birthday.

Back to other news for September 2008

Adapted from:
Toronto Star
09.17.2008; Donovan Vincent


  
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
 
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