Up until now, parents have been asked to give their consent ahead of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccinations administered to girls by school nurses, and many guardians have opted out of allowing their daughters to get the jab. But this is set to change.
Tuija Leino, who heads the National Institute for Health and Welfare THL’s immunisation unit, says permission was sought as parents were not aware that the HPV vaccine had been introduced to the national immunisation programme. But now that people know about it, permission is no longer needed, she explains.
Finland’s National Institute for Health and Welfare says about half of 11-12-year-old girls eligible for the vaccination received it in the past 5 years that it has been available as part of the national immunisation programme.
The THL says asking for permission has given parents pause for thought, leading some to opt out.
Leino says parents may feel their daughters won’t need the vaccine—although three-quarters of women contract the virus at some point in their lives and cervical cancer remains the third-most common form of cancer in Finland.
“One would imagine that people would would embrace a cancer prevention vaccine, but that hasn’t been the case,” Leino says.
Source: Uutiset, 15th August 2018.