Experts want HPV vaccine programme for boys

There has been a call for the HPV vaccine, which protects against certain types of cancer, to be made available to boys and people with compromised immune systems.

It is presently given to girls aged between nine and 12 to help protect against cervical cancer.

HPV or Human Papilloma Virus is the most common sexually transmitted infection in Ireland and worldwide.

Experts at St James's Hospital and Trinity College say the vaccine should be made more widely available.

Dr Corinna Sadlier, of the Genito-Urinary Medicine and Infectious Diseases unit at Trinity College, says there has been a high uptake of the vaccine in girls.

"What we would suggest is that the vaccine would be available to boys at a similar age to girls, so between 9 and 12," she said.

"We have a very successful national immunisation programme in Ireland - the uptake of the HPV vaccine in girls has been above 85%."

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