Health Authorities Question HPV’s Cost Effectiveness

It is being argued whether the Governments and school systems should recommend the vaccination of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to the young girls for the prevention of cervical cancer.

The debate has got even intense following a new study published in the edition of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). The study examined the cost effectiveness of vaccinating in young girls and women.

After the approval of the vaccine, Gardasil by the FDA, in June 2006, millions of females from 9 to 26 years of age have been vaccinated. It is concerning that the vaccine is priced $360 for three shots in six months.

The report of the NEJM highlighted that the vaccine is cost effective for 12-year-olds as the immunity is not affected after 10 years; a booster injection is required after that.

But on the other hand, the study also found that the injecting programs for females above 20 years of age will prove very expensive.

Also, another thing that is worrying the patients and physicians is that it is not clear if the vaccine has long-term or life-time effects.

Author of the NEJM editorial accompanying the study, Charlotte Haug, said that it is still an experiment and that more study is required to ascertain the exact solution for the prevention of the virus and complete adoption of the vaccine.