Now that the COVID vaccine is available for children ages 12 to 15, what does that mean for other vaccines, such as HPV?
GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. – Now that children between the ages of 12 and 15 can get the COVID vaccine, how does that affect other vaccines they need, such as HPV?
We spoke with the Mayo Clinic and the American Cancer Society.
“We’re doing everything we can to convince parents to come back and get the preventive care your children need now,” said Mayo Clinic, pediatrician, Dr. Robert Jacobson.
We already know that the pandemic ended preventive care for all of us. And now that the COVID vaccine has been approved for some kids, the concern is that parents will choose one over the other.
“We want to make sure that as parents are actively planning COVID vaccines for 12-15 year olds, they check with their pediatrician and see, are there any other vaccines my child should receive?” Said American’s Matt Flory. . Cancer Society.
The American Cancer Society has a special interest in the HPV vaccine. It’s a two-dose regimen given to children between the ages of 9 and 12 before they are sexually active. Human papilloma virus causes infections that can later lead to cancer. The vaccine can prevent up to 90% of six different cancers.
“Five of these six cancers don’t have screening tests to find them early,” says Flory. “Prevention is better than treatment, especially for cancers that will be found in the latter, less treatable stages.”
Dr. Robert Jacobson says both the COVID and HPV vaccines are important. One to end a pandemic, the other to end an endemic condition.
“We see COVID 19 as this scandalous condition that we need to keep under control. Well, the human papillomavirus causes cancers that are out of control, ”he says.
“Nearly 80% of us are infected by the time we are 50 years old, and each year we have 34,000 new cancers of the mouth, throat and genitals as a result of these infections years ago,” he says. .
And now that the CDC says you don’t have to wait between vaccines, the medical community is hoping it will make it easier for parents to get it done.
“Don’t just consider this an option, consider this a strong recommendation, they are doing this and are doing this now,” says Dr. Jacobson.
The American Cancer Society says only about 27% of Minnesota children have completed their HPV vaccine dose by age 13.