One-Third of Teens Need Extra Visits for HPV Vaccine

Older, non-white, uninsured and males will need more primary care visits to get needed doses

MONDAY, May 1 (HealthDay News) -- Although a vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV) is on the horizon, about 30 percent of adolescents would need three extra visits to their primary care providers over two years to get the needed doses, according to research presented during the annual meeting of the Pediatric Academic Societies in San Francisco.

Cynthia Rand, M.D., of the University of Rochester Medical Center in New York, and colleagues assessed 14,834 adolescents, ages 11 to 21, by examining the visits they made from 1996-2002 to physicians or nurse practitioners.

The researchers found about 30 percent of the adolescents had had no primary care visit within two years, and would require three extra visits to get the needed doses of HPV vaccine. Older adolescents needed more visits, as did males, non-whites, Hispanics, the uninsured and adolescents from lower income families.

"While 38 percent of adolescents had three primary care visits in two years, only 11 percent had visits with spacing for HPV vaccination," the authors write. "A three-dose HPV vaccine schedule will require more visits, but also provide time for other needed care."


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