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Vaccine effectiveness celebration – cervical cancer cases drop due to successful HPV Programme.

by Ryan Blake, a medical negligence lawyer at Irwin Mitchell

In the current climate where vaccines and the whether to have them or not is a hotly debated topic, we are reminded of the huge effectiveness that scientific developments can have as a result of the HPV programme aiming to tackle cervical cancer.

At the time of its introduction in 2008, the HPV programme could not have envisaged the effectiveness of the vaccine but researchers have found real-world data showing that it is cutting cases of cervical cancer by nearly 90 per cent.

Study finds HPV programme prevents deaths 

The study estimates that the HPV programme has prevented about 450 cancers and 17,200 pre-cancers, which is a fantastic result. However, questions remain, similar to the Covid-19 vaccines, as to the long term effectiveness and whether boosters are required. 

Additionally, the HPV programme started with girls between the ages of 11 and 13, and more recently with boys, but the effectiveness is only going to be seen in the younger generation, in particular from those currently in their 20s and below. That being said, the effectiveness of the programme cannot be in doubt and in particular when the results of the same call for a rethink the current smear test screening programme.

A timely reminder of the great work scientists carry out

In any event, it is a timely reminder of the great work that scientists and vaccination programmes can have. Additionally, with cervical cancer being the fourth most common cancer in women around the world, killing more than 300,000 each year, the hope is that the effectiveness can be shared across the world in an aim to eliminate cervical cancer.

Given the statistics from the study and the effectiveness observed, surely this is something that we can all get behind?

Find out more about our expertise in supporting people and families affected by cervical cancer at our dedicated cancer claims section.

The human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine is cutting cases of cervical cancer by nearly 90%, the first real-world data shows.

Cancer Research UK described the findings as "historic", and said it showed the vaccine was saving lives.”