Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
The Human Papillomaviruses are very common, there are approximately 100 types, of which 13 are known to cause cervical cancer. The HPV vaccine will protect against the most common strains (Type 16 and 18) which cause over 70 per cent of all cases of cervical cancer. The vaccine, called Cervarix, needs to be given as three injections over a period of six months to ensure girls are fully protected.
All girls in Year 8 will be offered the vaccine as far as possible in school. There is also a catch up campaign to make sure all girls up to eighteen years of age can have the vaccine.
All girls in Haringey schools will have received information via their school. If any girls have missed this information they should contact their school nurse.
The national cervical screening programme will remain essential to the detection and treatment of cervical cancer, especially as the disease often shows no symptoms in its early stages. This will remain unchanged following the introduction of HPV immunisation.
Parents can discuss any aspect of the vaccination programme with their daughter’s school nurse, GP or practice nurse.
They can also phone NHS Direct’s special HPV helpline on 0845 602 3303, or visit the Department of Health Immunisation page (external link).