Update on HPV vaccine30th September 2009
The Department of Health is working closely with the NHS and regulatory bodies to investigate the death of a teenage girl in Coventry after having a vaccine for cervical cancer.
The DH is investigating all details of the case but as a precautionary measure it has asked the NHS to quarantine all stocks of the HPV vaccine that are related to the case.
It has also stressed that no link can be made between the death and the vaccine until all the facts of the case are known but has emphasised that as soon as tests on the batch of vaccine are known, they will be publicly announced.
The department also says there is no reason to suspend or interrupt the HPV vaccination campaign, but acknowledges that over the next few days may occur in the coming days.
Any PCTs that need more HPV vaccine to replace quarantined stock have been told to order it through the normal processes.
To date, some 1.4 million doses of the HPV vaccine have been given in the UK with the DH stressing its strong safety record.
Half of all sexually active women will be infected by a strain of HPV in their lifetime, which is responsible for causing more than 99% of cervical cancer cases. The vaccine could eventually prevent up to 400 deaths due to cervical cancer every year.
Parents of young people who have any concerns over the vaccine should speak to their GP, visit NHS Choices or call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47.
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Title: Update on HPV vaccine
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 12784
Date Added: 30th Sep 2009