69 top US cancer centers call for increase in HPV vaccination rates

All 69 of the country's National Cancer Institute-designated cancer centers issued a statement this week encouraging parents and healthcare providers to step up HPV vaccination rates among children, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The cancer centers argue low uptake of the three-shot regimen is a "public health threat" and a major missed opportunity to prevent many potentially fatal malignancies.

Data released by the CDC in 2015 shows less than half (40 percent) of girls and less than a quarter (21 percent) of boys in the U.S. have received the vaccines. The HHS Healthy People 2020 initiative goal for HPV vaccination is 80 percent.

"This is really a sentinel event to have all the centers get together and say we're really not doing the best for our kids," said Lois Ramondetta, MD, professor of gynecologic oncology at University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. "We feel this is an effective, safe and long-lasting vaccine that we're not taking advantage of."



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