Teenagers miss out on vital jab


May 13, 2009

Almost half of young women in Gloucestershire aged 17 and 18 have not yet taken up a life-saving vaccine to help prevent the cancer that killed TV reality star Jade Goody.

And one in 10 of 12 and 13 year-old girls in the county have still not received their first immunisation jab, according to the Department of Health.

The vaccination programme, which began last September, is being carried out in a bid to protect women against the most common strains of the sexually-transmitted human papilloma virus, that causes 70 per cent of all cervical cancers.

It is hoped that vaccinating teenage girls could save hundreds of lives a year.

The vaccine is given in three injections over six months. To gain full protection it is important that the full course of jabs is taken.

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Of the 3,672 girls aged 12 and 13 in Gloucestershire, 88 per cent have taken the first dose compared to a national average of 84.3 per cent, and for the second dose it is 78.2 per cent, in line with the national average.

But among the 3,765 girls aged 17 and 18, the uptake has been lower, at 53 per cent for the first dose, and 51.8 per cent for the second dose.


Comment from Leslie –

This is the same age group of girls that are not getting vaccinated in the U.S. – perhaps they are more educated and have been following reports on the dangers – or maybe have suffered or knows someone who has had adverse reactions….

Jade Goody died because she did not follow-up on her pap test screenings for abnormal cell growth.  She already had contracted HPV – the vaccine would not have helper her.  Using her as an Icon for the fallen woman is sick and unjust – especially when using her as a fear tactic for other women.


Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.