Bavaria: Protection against cancer: Fewer HPV vaccinations during Corona

Munich (dpa/lby) - It is the only vaccination against cancer so far: But in the first Corona year 2020, significantly fewer children and adolescents were vaccinated against an infection with the HPV virus than in the previous year.

Bavaria: Protection against cancer: Fewer HPV vaccinations during Corona

Munich (dpa/lby) - It is the only vaccination against cancer so far: But in the first Corona year 2020, significantly fewer children and adolescents were vaccinated against an infection with the HPV virus than in the previous year. The initial vaccination rate fell by around ten percent for girls and by 1.4 percent for boys, as the health insurance company DAK Bayern announced on Thursday. Human papillomavirus (HPV) can cause cervical cancer and cancer of the mouth and throat. Because they are transmitted through sexual contact, vaccination is recommended for both sexes before having sex.

According to the German Cancer Aid, around 7,700 people develop HPV-related cancer in Germany every year. In Bavaria too, too many people are still affected, said DAK state boss Sophie Schwab. "It is very important to raise awareness and educate parents in particular about this issue in order to protect the health of future generations."

After all, the initial vaccination rate for boys almost reached the level for girls: in 2020, eight percent of boys between the ages of 9 and 17 in Bavaria received an HPV vaccination, and it was eleven percent for girls. Nevertheless, the overall vaccination rate for boys is well below the rate for girls, emphasized the DAK. According to the latest data from the Robert Koch Institute, the proportion of fully vaccinated girls aged 15 at the end of 2019 was around 47 percent, while only five percent of all boys of the same age were fully vaccinated.

The DAK is one of the largest health insurance companies in Germany and analyzed the data of almost 50,000 children and young people between the ages of 9 and 17 from Bavaria for the evaluation. As a result, the figures are considered representative. The reason for this was the 6th Bavarian Vaccination Week, which started on Monday: This year's motto is "HPV vaccination - your protection against cancer".

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