Elk Grove Village, IL—(ENEWSPF)—December 5, 2016. A decade after a vaccine to fight the cancer-causing human papillomavirus (HPV) was introduced in the United States, almost half of adolescents have yet to receive the first dose. A study in the January 2017 Pediatrics suggests an effective way to increase HPV vaccination rates is for healthcare providers to include it among those they recommend and assume children will receive as routine preventive care.
The study, “Announcements versus Conversations to Improve HPV Vaccination Coverage: A Randomized Trial” (online December 5) involved 30 North Carolina pediatric and family medicine clinics in 2015. Providers at the clinics received either “announcement” training to make brief statements that assume parents are ready to vaccinate, or “conversation” training to engage parents in open-ended discussions about the HPV vaccine. A control group received no training. The researchers determined that HPV vaccination coverage among 11- and 12-year-old patients increased by more than 5 percent over six months in clinics where providers received presumptive announcement training, while those receiving participatory conversation training saw no increase.
Authors of the study said the announcement approach may be more effective because providers can give a brief recommendation that avoids discussing sex while still giving parents an opportunity to ask questions if they wish to.
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The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 66,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org.
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