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President’s Cancer Panel pushes to increase HPV vaccination rates

The HPV vaccine – an immunization that protects against the human papillomavirus, which causes genital warts, cervical cancer, and some throat cancers – is recommended for adolescent boys as well as girls. But vaccination rates have failed to meet target levels.

The President’s Cancer Panel issued a report urging for increased attention to HPV vaccination, calling low vaccination rates “a serious but correctable threat to the progress against cancer.”

Some public health officials have considered state laws allowing teens to get the HPV vaccine without their parents’ consent as a way of trying to increase immunization rates. But in a 2012 NPCH Report, less than half of U.S. adults said they’d support this type of law. Among those who said teens shouldn’t be able to get the vaccine without a parent’s consent, 86% said HPV vaccination should be a parent’s decision. Read the full report: Public reluctant to support teen HPV vaccination without parental consent.

Infographic: public support for state laws allowing adolescents age 12-17 to receive medical care without consent

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What are your thoughts about HPV vaccination for adolescents? Should teens be able to get the vaccine without their parent’s consent? Tell us what you think in the comments or take our quick poll!

To learn more about the HPV vaccine, watch this short video with NPCH Associate Director Sarah Clark: