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Providing vaccines against human papillomavirus to adolescent girls in the Americas: battling cervical cancer, improving overall health.

Research paper by Silvana S Luciani, Elisa E Prieto-Lara, Andrea A Vicari

Indexed on: 10 Jun '11Published on: 10 Jun '11Published in: Health affairs (Project Hope)



Abstract

Vaccines against the human papillomavirus (HPV)--the primary cause of cervical cancer--target adolescent girls, many of whom have limited contact with health services. Countries in the Americas are beginning to use HPV vaccines to increase the impact of cervical cancer programs and as an entry point to broader health services for girls. This strategy opens new opportunities to improve lifelong health habits; encourage regular cervical cancer screening and treatment, when necessary; and offer associated services such as reproductive health and nutrition guidance. Some of the early experiences with this strategy illustrate challenges and opportunities that may arise with other new vaccines.