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Roswell receives funding to increase HPV vaccinations

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Roswell Park Cancer Institute has been awarded special funding that will be specifically directed at increasing HPV vaccinations among youth. WBFO's Eileen Buckley reports Roswell is one of 18 centers nationwide to lead this effort in preventing cancer-causing viruses.

"This is a special pool of money made available through the National Cancer Institute. It is competitive funding," said Dr. Martin Mahoney, Professor of Oncology at Roswell Park. He will lead this vaccination effort. 

In 2006  the HPV vaccine  initially targeted females ages 9 to 26.  It later expanded to males in that same age group.  HPV is the cause of cervical and other genital and head and neck cancers.   

"Many vaccines require a single dose. The HPV requires three doses, optimally administered over a period of six months," said Dr. Mahoney.

The one year, $150-thousand grant will be used to increase the numbers of youth receiving the HPV vaccines.    Dr. Mahoney notes the cancers caused by HPV are significant.  But Mahoney noted  the numbers of seeking the vaccinations leveled off.

"It's simply an age based recommendation," stated Mahoney.

Roswell's main goal is to  establish partnerships with the stakeholders who are caring for adolescents and teens that would include pediatrics and hospitals as well as school nurses, minority health coalitions and colleges and universities.