APPLE A DAY
FREE HPV vaccine for Boys and young men
There has been an awareness campaign by the government recently about Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and an increased funding for its vaccines (called Gardasil) for both boys and girls. So let’s learn about it.
HPV is extremely common and most men and women who have been sexually active are infected with it at some time in their lives. Most HPV infections are thought to clear naturally and do not cause health problems. However, for some, it can cause pre-cancerous lesions in the genital tract and mouth, and genital warts.
Rates of throat cancers have risen sharply since the 1980s and many are caused by HPV and they affect males at higher rates than females. HPV-related cancers cause more than 50 deaths, every year, in New Zealand- most of which were preventable.
Gardasil, given through injection, can protect against many strains of HPV and it protects both males and females from most cancers caused by HPV. It has been offered to New Zealand girls partly to help reduce cervical cancer. More than 200,000 New Zealand females have received the vaccine since 2008.
From 1st January 2017, funding for Gardasil has increased and both boys and girls are now included in the HPV school vaccination programme for year 8 students. Outside of that as long as you are 26 years old or under, you can also have this funded vaccine given at your family doctor’s clinic. So, do enquire about it now and give yourself the best protection.
WITH DR RUOH SIM