As of today, the state finances vaccinations against ten infectious diseases. But soon, the list of compulsory vaccinations may be joined by a new one -vaccination against Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), causing cervical cancer.

As healthcare minister of Ukraine Raisa Bohatyryova told an open lecture "Immunoprophylaxis as a method to strengthen national security", every day six women die of cervical cancer in Ukraine,and the latest researches prove that the disease is caused by Human Papilloma Virus.

According to Bohatyryova, countries, having compulsory vaccination against HPV in the program of  immunoprophylaxis, have reduced the cervical cancer infection rate among young women. Thus, vaccination against HPV will be added to the calendar of compulsory vaccinations in Ukraine as well.

She believes that even if the state budget does not have sufficient means to provide 100% vaccination against HPV, doctors will have to inform and explain people where to buy this vaccine in order to avoid risks of cancer.

ForUm has asked specialists how expedient it is to vaccinate people against HPV and make this vaccination compulsory:

Anna Horban, pediatrician:

- Private vaccinations against HPV have been held in Ukraine for a long time already. We do not observe any side effects, and the initiative to make this vaccination compulsory nationwide is very welcomed by doctors.

Papilloma virus is dangerous for both boys and girls, and I hope the vaccination will become compulsory among teens in the nearest time. This vaccine is a good protection against cervical cancer.

Oleksiy Babich, family doctor:

- Vaccination against HPV must be compulsory. It has been proved that without it there are risks to get cervical cancer. Speaking about adults, there are certain doubts concerning obligatory vaccination of men, as papilloma virus does not cause any pathologies among them, they can be only carriers of the virus. But women do need it. 

As for children and the initiative to expand the calendar of compulsory vaccinations, there are no doubts that children under 12 must be vaccinated. It is a common practice in the West. Personally, I believe it is a right thing to do and I would recommend this vaccination to all my patients.

Ihor Shchepotyn, director of the National cancer institute:

- If the project is realized in Ukraine, it will be a very progressive step. All civilized countries follow this path. We will be able to save the young generation of women from the horrible disease. For Ukraine it is especially timely, as the morbidity rate grows year after year.

Cervical cancer is not only a medical problem, but a demographic one as well. With the decrease in population of Ukrainians, we will be able to save future mothers, as the treatment for cervical cancers includes removal of female reproductive organs.

Vyacheslav Kaminski, chief obstetrician-gynecologist of the Healthcare Ministry of Ukraine:

- Such vaccinations are a common practice, and they give results. All civilized countries are engaged into prophylaxis of such horrible disease as cervical cancer.

Vaccination against HPV rules out the probability of having this disease by 95%. This initiative has my full support.

Fedor Lapiy, chief pediatric immunologist of the Kyiv healthcare department:

- The state finances vaccinations against ten infectious diseases. This is a social minimum for all countries. Advanced countries, though, have a way bigger list of compulsory vaccinations. The US, for example, vaccinates against 16 infectious diseases, Austria - against 17.  On average, the vaccination rate makes 13-14 infectious diseases at the budget costs.

Women do not need cervical cancer, and families do not have to lose mothers. We can prevent this disease in 70% of cases. This vaccine is good and reliable enough, and is used in the US, Canada, Europe and Latin America. Vaccination before the beginning of sex life (at the age of 9-10) is the most effective.

There are two registered vaccines in Ukraine. Patients can obtain it in any licensed private medical institution. Moreover, there are regional programs working in Dnipropetrovsk and Kharkiv. Until the government adds this vaccine to the calendar of compulsory vaccination we should support the regional programs and inform people about them.


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