Vaccine to prevent cervical cancer among girls safe, assures DOH doc

KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews / 3 Aug) – The vaccine that protects girls aged 9 to 13 from cervical cancer is safe, a government doctor in Region 12 said.

Dr. Edvir Montaner, of the Department of Health (DoH) in Region 12, said they started to administer this July until August the giving of first dose of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines to girls in public schools. The second dose would be given from February until March next year, she added.

“We target girls aged 9 to 13 for the vaccine as it is during this stage that their reproductive organs start to develop,” she said, noting that girls start to have menstrual cycle. “We all know the life of an adolescent nowadays,” Montaner said during a press briefing held at Eva’s Hotel here Thursday.

The HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) but is different from the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and herpes, studies from the DoH showed.

Montaner explained that the HPV vaccine is “one best protection” against cervical cancer and other reproductive health problems.

Citing studies, she said the vaccine is safe and is effective at preventing HPV.

“Vaccines, like any medicine, can have side effects. But many people who get the HPV vaccine have no side effects at all,” she pointed out.

“We started giving of HPV vaccines to girls four years ago, and none so far died or developed other diseases after they were given the dosage,” Montaner said.

She, however, admitted that because of the “mass hysteria” brought about by the controversies behind the Dengvaxia vaccine. Thus, they were able to administer the HPV vaccine on fewer girls. (Malu Cadelina Manar / MindaNews)