In the United States, there are approximately 12,360 cases of invasive cervical cancer diagnosed annually resulting in 4,020 deaths each year. Human papillomavirus is the known cause for the majority of all cervical cancers. The FDA and CDC have approved vaccination for the prevention of HPV. Since the approval of HPV vaccines only 33 percent of eligible females and 10 percent of eligible males have been vaccinated. The goal of this study is to investigate the barriers to HPV vaccination for eligible recipients and to determine whether an educational intervention regarding HPV vaccination results in improved attitudes and likelihood of vaccination. The study is being performed in conjunction with the ACOG District XII Health Care for Underserved Women Committee.
We conducted a community outreach educational seminar to evaluate participants' baseline knowledge regarding HPV, the HPV vaccine, and opinions about vaccination. Each participant was asked to complete a survey on HPV upon arrival. We then executed a brief educational seminar about HPV. Following completion of the educational session, the study participants again completed the survey.
Data analyzed with Fisher Exact Test noted a statistically significant improvement in knowledge of HPV related facts and willingness to accept the HPV vaccine following the educational seminar, P<.01.
Educational seminars show a clear benefit increasing education and awareness regarding the purpose and benefits of the HPV vaccine. Providing addition educational opportunities of eligible recipients and their guardians may provide higher vaccination rates, and thereby lower cervical cancer rates in the future.
Univ of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Financial Disclosure: Dr. DeCesare (Program Director, Florida State University COM [Pensacola]) disclosed the following—Bayer: Speaker/Honoraria includes speakers bureau, symposia, and expert witness. The other authors did not report any potential conflicts of interest.