July 15, 2016 – Cancer Docs Speak


Anchor lead:  Why are cancer doctors advocating for a vaccine? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Almost all teenagers should be getting vaccinated against human papilloma virus, or HPV, but fewer than half are, national data reveal.  Cancer doctors all over the nation have joined together to ask their primary care colleagues to change that.  William Nelson, director of the Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, reviews the data.

Nelson: Something on the order of 79 million Americans have been infected by HPV, 14 million new infections every year. People get infected when they’re in their teens, and so the recommendation is to give these vaccines to boys and girls age 11 and 12, but right now, 2014 the last time statistics were available, 40% of teenage girls and 22% of teenage boys got all three of these doses.  That’s a horrendous scorecard. And it’s not that they’re not getting vaccinated, the question ends up being why? :31

Nelson emphasizes that the HPV vaccine prevents cancer.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.