HPV vaccine to be made available to Grade 6 boys in B.C.

The vaccination is offered to Grade 6 girls, under the assumption boys would be indirectly protected

In the next few weeks, the free Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccinations will be open to boys in Grade 6.

B.C. joins a number of provinces who have already made the vaccines available, including New Brunswick, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador.

HPV is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections, often showing no physical symptoms but can lead to cancer.

Most sexually active men and women become infected with HPV at some point during their lifetime – or about three-in-four, according to the Ministry of Health. Most people clear the virus in about two years, but in a small proportion of those infected, the virus persists and can later cause cancer.

READ MORE: Canadian Cancer Society says boys need HPV vaccine too

READ MORE: HPV-related oral cancers have risen dramatically in men: Canadian Cancer

The vaccination was previously offered to Grade 6 girls, under the assumption that boys would be indirectly protected through herd immunity. Females born in 1994 or later who were not immunized in the school-based program can also get the vaccine.

In 2016, the Canadian Cancer Society found HPV-related oral cancers have risen dramatically in men and called for the vaccination eligibility to expand.

“The HPV vaccine is a proven and effective way to prevent many different types of cancer, and yet here in B.C. we are leaving a significant number of our boys and young men vulnerable to disease,” said Jenny Byford, advocacy lead of the Canadian Cancer Society, BC and Yukon, in a statement at the time.

“We believe everyone should have equal and affordable access to the HPV vaccine to prevent cancer, regardless of gender, sexual orientation or social status.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

B.C. freestyle skier wins gold

Cassie Sharpe of Comox shines in the halfpipe

Icy conditions lead to Parksville crash

Sub-freezing overnight temperatures forecast for rest of week

Qualicum Beach Fire & Ice Festival snuffed out

Committee announces termination of event after 25 years

Parksville-Qualicum MLA says throne speech thin on detail

Stilwell: Government lacks economic development plan to pay for promises

VIDEO: Vaudeville variety show in Errington kicks off

Raunchy comedy, impressive singing, sultry dances and more feature in show

Moose creates uber Canadian Olympic moment

A Calgary man shares a truly Canadian moment on Twitter of a Moose enjoying the Olympics

The Wounded Warrior Run makes it to Woss

Feb. 20 marks the Woss to Sayward leg of the run

B.C. drunk driver unknowingly drags snowmobiles along highway

North District RCMP stopped a driver Sunday near Prince George whose two sleds had fallen off a flat deck trailer and were being dragged along behind his truck.

Canada reacts to Cassie Sharpe’s Olympic gold

From Prime Minister Trudeau to Ryan Reynolds, congratulations abound

Vancouver Island job market ever-evolving

Various sectors driving employment in region will be represented at Black Press career fair in Comox Feb. 8

BCHL Today: Shorthanded scoring binge for Victoria Grizzlies and Krall named POW

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at whats going on around the league and the junior A world.

Search for missing Okanagan diver ends

Vernon’s Gloria Anne Miller was last seen Thursday, Feb. 15 diving in Puerto Vallarta

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Canada rounds out Day 11 earning gold in 2 more events

Comox Valley’s Cassie Sharpe and fan-favourites Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir all earned golds

Most Read