Holly mentioned something in her blog the other day about the vaccine for HPV and how the governor of Texas was mandating it for all girls in the 6th grade and older. I was going to leave a comment, but thought it would be a little too lengthy.
MFD had a follow up with her primary physician last week, and one of the recommendations was that we get her the Gardasil vaccine, along with the one for meningitis. Doc gave us some pamphlets about HPV and cervical cancer to read about before we made our decision. Much more information is available at www.tell-someone.com.
I am all for giving my children a vaccine that can possibly prevent a serious or deadly disease. Depending on the disease, I would have them vaccinated whether it was approved by the CDC or not, and paid for by insurance or not.
One of the universities in the state next door had a rash of meningitis cases a while back. Meningitis can and did kill young adults in a matter of hours. Those that survive can suffer severe consequences.
I played heck last summer trying to get the meningococcal vaccine for MFS before he left for college. Although the vaccine was highly recommended for those that would be living in dormitories and even required by some colleges, the CDC had not yet approved it. It was a very expensive vaccine and because many health insurances would not cover the cost, it was not readily available. My doctor’s office didn’t carry it, and when I checked with several health departments, there was a long waiting list. I did finally manage to get him back in to the pediatrician’s office, so that was a relief.
Now there is a newer vaccine available that has been approved by the CDC, so our current doctor’s office does now carry it.
The Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices has approved the use of the HPV vaccine (Gardasil) for 11-12 year old girls, although it can be given as early as age 9. For older girls, ACIP recommends a “catch up” for ages 13-26, which basically means if they haven’t been vaccinated, they should. From the information I read, the vaccine is recommended even if the girl is already sexually active or has had HPV. This is because there are about 100 types of HPV, and she may not have been exposed to the four types the vaccine can protect against.
The ACIP recommendations have been presented to the director of the CDC and the Department of Health and Human Services, but they have not been approved yet.
I believe that if the CDC has approved a vaccine, states have every right to require proof of immunization from school children. However, if a state, like Texas, is going to mandate a vaccine that has not yet been approved, and therefore may not be covered by insurance, the state should be responsible for the cost.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know. When bovines quit producing methane.Flo