A great majority of Mozambican adolescent girls are willing to be vaccinated against HPV

June 5, 2018, Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal)
A HPV and cervical cancer information campaign in a school in Southern Mozambique. Credit: ISGlobal

A study in Mozambique reveals that a majority of adolescent girls interviewed would be willing to be vaccinated against the human papilloma virus (HPV) if the vaccine were available in the country. These results are encouraging with regard to vaccine introduction and reducing mortality associated with cervical cancer in Mozambique. The investigation was led by the Manhiça Health Research Center (CISM) and ISGlobal, an institution supported by "la Caixa" Foundation

The highest burden of cervical cancer is concentrated in sub-Saharan Africa, where it is the main cause of cancer mortality among women. Therefore, the introduction of the vaccine against HPV (the causative agent of cervical cancer) is urgent and strategic to achieve the global health targets. Mozambique is one of the countries with the highest incidence of cervical cancer, and 40 percent of asymptomatic women in reproductive age are estimated to be infected by HPV. In 2013, Gavi funded a demonstration programme for HPV vaccination prior to the introduction of the vaccine at the national level. The programme targeted (10-19 years of age) in three areas of the country.

The goal of this study was to assess the awareness on cervical cancer and HPV infection, and predict the acceptance of HPV vaccination, among adolescent girls in three districts of Mozambique. The survey results show that a great majority of adolescent girls (around 80 percent) had heard of cervical and was aware it could be prevented, although few knew about HPV infection and its association with or the importance of vaccinating before the debut of sexual activity. The results also showed that more than 90 percent of adolescent girls were willing to be vaccinated if the vaccine was available in the country. Awareness and acceptability levels were higher among girls where information campaigns had been conducted as part of the demonstation programme.

"These results are very encouraging," says lead author Azucena Bardají, "and confirm the critical role of awareness-raising campaigns in the communities." As senior author Khátia Munguambe points out, the results indicate that the best option for the Mozambican Ministry of Health would be delivering the vaccine at school and complementing with community and health center strategies to reach those girls that have dropped out of school. The study received support from the Government of Mozambique, Gavi (the Vaccine Alliance), the Barcelona City Hall and the Aga Khan Foundation.

Explore further: Parents want the HPV vaccine for their sons – new research

More information: Azucena Bardají et al, Awareness of cervical cancer and willingness to be vaccinated against human papillomavirus in Mozambican adolescent girls, Papillomavirus Research (2018). DOI: 10.1016/j.pvr.2018.04.004

Related Stories

Parents want the HPV vaccine for their sons – new research

April 12, 2018
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a sexually transmitted infection that causes diseases that affect both men and women. In the UK, girls are vaccinated against HPV but boys are not.

Only small increase in US girls getting cervical cancer shot

July 30, 2015
More U.S. girls are getting a controversial vaccine, but the increase last year was only slight.

Facts women and men should know about cervical cancer

January 22, 2018
January is Cervical Cancer Awareness month and the message from the Centers from Disease Control and Prevention is that "no woman should die from cervical cancer."

HPV vaccine uptake among girls is lowest in states with highest rates of cervical cancer

November 12, 2014
The proportion of adolescent girls receiving human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines was much lower in states with higher rates of cervical cancer incidence and mortality, according to data presented at the American Association ...

Vaccination produces huge drop in early cervical cancer signs

October 4, 2017
The number of young Scottish women showing early signs of potential cervical cancer have almost halved since the introduction of a school vaccination programme.

Lack of clarity about HPV vaccine and the need for cervical cancer screening

July 7, 2011
The research will be presented today at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Society of Academic Primary Care, hosted this year by the Academic Unit of Primary Health Care, University of Bristol.

Recommended for you

Juul e-cigarettes pose addiction risk for young users, study finds

October 19, 2018
Teens and young adults who use Juul brand e-cigarettes are failing to recognize the product's addictive potential, despite using it more often than their peers who smoke conventional cigarettes, according to a new study by ...

Self-lubricating latex could boost condom use: study

October 17, 2018
A perpetually unctuous, self-lubricating latex developed by a team of scientists in Boston could boost the use of condoms, they reported Wednesday in the journal Royal Society Open Science.

Engineered enzyme eliminates nicotine addiction in preclinical tests

October 17, 2018
Scientists at Scripps Research have successfully tested a potential new smoking-cessation treatment in rodents.

Nutrition has a greater impact on bone strength than exercise

October 17, 2018
One question that scientists and fitness experts alike would love to answer is whether exercise or nutrition has a bigger positive impact on bone strength.

How healthy will we be in 2040?

October 17, 2018
A new scientific study of forecasts and alternative scenarios for life expectancy and major causes of death in 2040 shows all countries are likely to experience at least a slight increase in lifespans. In contrast, one scenario ...

Study finds evidence of intergenerational transmission of trauma among ex-POWs from the Civil War

October 16, 2018
A trio of researchers affiliated with the National Bureau of Economic Research has found evidence that suggests men who were traumatized while POWs during the U.S. Civil War transmitted that trauma to their offspring—many ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.