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Human Papilloma Virus and the Nurse’s Role in Education and Prevention

Sherry, Jennifer S. RDH, MSEd; Collins, Sandra K. MBA, PhD; McKinnies, Richard C. MSEd, RT(R)(T), CMD; Fleege, Anthony MBA; Walter, Marcea L. MHSA

doi: 10.1097/HCM.0000000000000226

In the United States, an estimated 20 million people, or 15% of the population, are currently infected with human papilloma virus (HPV). The prevalence of HPV is increasing in females aged 14 to 24 years. Assessing allied health students’ knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors regarding HPV was performed using a 34-question survey. The survey was in four sections: general information, measuring knowledge of HPV and the vaccine, HPV vaccine, and HPV screening and diagnosis. Physicians were noted by 31.6% of the participants as the first individual who gave them information about HPV. There were 46.4% of the participants who stated that HPV education came from a school nurse. Nurses play a critical role in educating young people about the benefits of the HPV vaccine.

Author Affiliations: Dental Hygiene Program (Ms Sherry), Health Care Management Program (Dr Collins and Ms Walter), Radiation Therapy and Medical Dosimetry Programs (Mr McKinnies), and School of Allied Health (Mr Fleege), Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

Correspondence: Marcea L. Walter, MHSA, Health Care Management Program, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, 1365 Douglas Dr, Mail Code 6615, Carbondale, IL 62901 (

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