HPV (Human papillomavirus) infections can cause cancers of the cervix, mouth, and throat. About 85% of people get an HPV infection in their lifetime. Fortunately, the HPV vaccine is safe and highly effective against HPV infections. It is important for both boys and girls to receive this vaccine.
The vaccine schedule was recently updated to recommend beginning the 2-dose HPV vaccine series at the 9 year-old Well Child Check-up, instead of at the 11-12 year old Well Child Check-up. Studies have shown that receiving the HPV vaccine earlier produces a better immune response, and there is no evidence that protection wears off over time. Additionally, if your child waits to start the HPV vaccine series until they are 15 or older, they will need to receive a third dose of the vaccine for it to be fully effective. It has been proven that vaccinating just 202 people can prevent 1 case of HPV-related cancer. Please help protect your child from HPV and be sure to schedule their well child checkups and routine immunizations.