Thursday, January 15, 2015 - 1:43pm
National Effort to improve Rates of Vaccinating Teens Against a Virus that Causes Cancer
Dane County is joining a national effort to improve rates of vaccinating teens against a virus that causes cancer.
Figures from 2013, the latest available, show that almost 29 percent of Dane County teens ages 13 to 17 had received the three vaccinations necessary to prevent human papillomavirus infection, which can cause cervical, anal and oral cancers. The overall 2013 Wisconsin vaccination rate was 19 percent.
“We know that Dane County can do better, and our New Year’s resolution for 2015 is to improve our vaccination rates,” says Diane McHugh, coordinator of the Dane County Immunization Coalition (DCIC).
The Dane County Immunization Coalition was one of sixteen local coalitions to receive a grant from the Wisconsin Immunization Program and the Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Control Program (WCCCP) to promote and support HPV vaccine-related activities within their communities. DCIC is promoting the value of immunization to the public through a movie trailer shown at local theaters encouraging HPV vaccine for cancer prevention from mid-December through late January, training local health care providers on the importance of timely immunization with HPV vaccine, and encouraging community groups to promote HPV vaccine for their participants.
Dr. Noelle LoConte, associate professor of medicine at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, says that because the HPV virus is known to cause cancer, getting the vaccine is one of the surest ways to prevent cancer.
"One of the Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Control Plan’s goals is to reduce the risk of people in our state getting cancer,” says Dr. Noelle LoConte, an oncologist. “By increasing the use of the HPV vaccine statewide, we are closing the door to cancer for our children’s generation."
LoConte is a member of the UW Carbone Cancer Center, one of 18 National Cancer Institute centers that received grants to improve HPV vaccine rates. The NCI centers are meeting this week about improving HPV vaccination rates nationwide.
POSTED ON BEHALF OF THE DANE COUNTY IMMUNIZATION COALITION and
THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN CARBONE CANCER CENTER
- Gwen Long, 608-438-3539, GLong@ghcscw.com