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HPV vaccination: protection against cancer is easy!

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HPV vaccination: protection against cancer is easy!

28.02.2024 – 12:02

German cancer aid

Bonn (ots)

Studies in several countries have now shown that vaccination against human papillomavirus (HPV) effectively protects against cancer. Nevertheless, the proportion of fully vaccinated girls and boys is still far from comprehensive protection. On World HPV Day on March 4th, the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), the German Cancer Aid and the German Cancer Society (DKG) remind parents and doctors, children and young people: Protection against cancer is easy – a small spade is enough!

In Germany alone, around 7,700 people develop HPV-related cancer every year. In addition to cervical cancer, the viruses cause tumors in the mouth and throat, in the anus and in the male genital area. Since 2018, the Standing Vaccination Commission has recommended vaccination against cancer-causing human papilloma viruses for boys and girls aged 9 to 14 years, because the vaccination has been proven to protect against HPV-related cancers.

Nevertheless, in Germany only 54 percent of 15-year-old girls and 27 percent of boys of the same age are fully vaccinated against HPV*. This means that Germany is still a long way from comprehensive protection against cancer-causing human papilloma viruses, which is only possible with a vaccination rate of at least 70 percent.

“The HPV vaccination is one of the most important and effective preventive measures against cancer. And one of the simplest: a small spade is enough. On World HPV Day, we appeal to all parents to take advantage of the opportunity and give their children this protection against cancer to give the way,” says Professor Dr. med. Dr. hc Michael Baumann, CEO of the DKFZ.

“One difficulty with the widespread distribution of the HPV vaccination is that children and young people in the relevant age group often do not have regular contact with a doctor where protection against HPV infections could be discussed,” says Gerd Nettekoven, CEO of the German Cancer Aid. “In order to noticeably increase the vaccination rate, we need structures and programs that remind parents and children about the HPV vaccination.”

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Experience from other countries – such as Australia and England – shows that school vaccination programs contribute to high vaccination rates. The advantage: Voluntary HPV vaccination offers in schools reach all children and young people as well as their parents – regardless of their individual health awareness. A recent representative survey commissioned by the DKFZ showed that two thirds of all Germans support the introduction of such programs. Higher participation rates in examinations by pediatricians – especially in the U10 and U11 examinations for children of primary school age – could also help to increase the HPV vaccination rate. These examinations are covered by many, but not all, health insurance companies.

Professor Dr. med. Michael Ghadimi, President of the German Cancer Society, says: “Studies in several countries that had a high vaccination rate from the start have now shown that the HPV vaccination effectively prevents cancer: This went well in girls who were vaccinated against HPV early enough Cervical cancer rates have fallen by up to 90 percent. Recent data from Scotland shows that the protective effect could be even higher.”

In order for the vaccination to achieve its high protective potential, it is important that it is carried out in a timely manner, because the risk of becoming infected with HPV increases with the first sexual contacts. The Standing Vaccination Commission therefore recommends the HPV vaccination for girls and boys between the ages of 9 and 14. If this time window is missed, vaccinations can be made up to your 18th birthday free of charge.

* Stand 2021, https://ots.de/9YmzKD

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A giant HP virus for interactive gaming and learning

Two hands-on stations in the shape of giant HP viruses provide interactive, child-friendly information about vaccinations, HPV and cancer. The stations can be borrowed from the DKFZ and the German Cancer Aid.



Traveling exhibition: HPV has many faces

The traveling exhibition “HPV has many faces” with an accompanying brochure attempts to approach the stories of six people diagnosed with cancer, for whom an HPV infection and its consequences became a constant companion in their lives. The traveling exhibition can be borrowed from the German Cancer Research Center.


[email protected]

Tel. 06221 42 2854

Employees from medical professions can also make an important contribution to convincing parents of the benefits of the HPV vaccine. A new infographic from the DKFZ puts together the strategies and arguments for this:

Further information on the HPV vaccination can be found in the leaflet “Short treatment, long protection”, which can be ordered free of charge from the German Cancer Aid at: www.krebshilfe.de/infomaterial

With more than 3,000 employees, the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) is the largest biomedical research institution in Germany. At the DKFZ, scientists research how cancer develops, record cancer risk factors and look for new strategies that prevent people from developing cancer. They are developing new methods with which tumors can be diagnosed more precisely and cancer patients can be treated more successfully. At the DKFZ Cancer Information Service (KID), those affected, interested parties and specialist groups can receive individual answers to all questions about cancer.

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In order to transfer promising approaches from cancer research to the clinic and thus improve the chances of patients, the DKFZ operates translation centers together with excellent university hospitals and research institutions throughout Germany:

National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT, 6 locations) German Consortium for Translational Cancer Research (DKTK, 8 locations) Hopp Children’s Tumor Center (KiTZ) Heidelberg Helmholtz Institute for Translational Oncology (HI-TRON) Mainz – a Helmholtz Institute of the DKFZ DKFZ-Hector Cancer Institute at the University Medical Center Mannheim National Cancer Prevention Center (together with the German Cancer Aid)

The DKFZ is financed 90 percent by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and 10 percent by the state of Baden-Württemberg and is a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers.

Contact person for the press:

Dr. Sibylle Kohlstädt

Press spokesperson

Strategic communication and public relations

German Cancer-research center

In Neuenheimer Feld 280

69120 Heidelberg

T: +49 6221 42 2843

F: +49 6221 42 2968

E-Mail: [email protected]

E-Mail: [email protected]


Press contact:

German cancer aid
Press office
Buschstr. 32
53113 Bonn
Phone: 02 28/7 29 90-96
E-Mail: [email protected]
Internet: www.krebshilfe.de

Original content from: German Cancer Aid, transmitted by news aktuell

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