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Waikato DHB gets protective over its youth

Waikato DHB gets protective over its youth

Waikato District Health Board is making it as easy as possible for
young women to receive protection against potential cervical cancer.

Not only has the DHB agreed to continue the human papillomavirus (HPV)
immunisations for year 8-13 girls in primary and restricted composite
schools for another year, but it has also facilitated catch-up clinics
this school term for eligible girls who have not had all three doses of
the vaccine.

The catch-up clinics are currently taking place at schools, as well as
in the community setting and are advertised on a new billboard on the
corner of Tristram and London Sts in Hamilton.

Girls aged 16 years and over, or parents of girls aged under 16, can
ring or text 021 241 9442 for more information about the clinics, find
out where they are, and make appointments.

"It takes three," said HPV programme manager Marg Carey.

"These young women must have all three doses of the vaccine to get
the protection required to prevent cervical cancer in the future."

She said Waikato DHB opted to offer the entire immunisation programme
over one school year rather than two, to keep disruption in schools to a

"However, we have been asked by the Ministry of Health to run the
school-based programme for another year and for the good of Waikato
girls, we have agreed to do that, and will be back in high schools
offering HPV immunisations in 2010."

The school-based HPV programme became an addition to the National
Immunisation Register in January 2008 as a routine immunisation for year
eight girls.

More than 99 per cent of cervical cancer is linked to HPV infection.
Every year in New Zealand, approximately 160 women are diagnosed with
cervical cancer and 60 die from it.

Immunising girls and young women against the main cause of cervical
cancer will reduce their chances of getting cervical cancer.

"The overall purpose of the programme is to reduce the incidence of
the HPV infection and the development of cervical cancer / genital
warts," said Mrs Carey.

For more information about the HPV immunisation programme, visit and call or text 021 241 9442 to
find out more about the Waikato catch-up clinics.


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