On Monday, January 30th, Associate Professor Dr. Jeanie Smith and P3 student Jessica Gall appeared on KATV’s Good Morning Arkansas to discuss HPV and cervical cancer. Here are the talking points they discussed and a link to their video clip below.
- HPV infection and cervical cancer are major problems in Arkansas.
- Almost 80 million Americans are infected with HPV (https://www.cdc.gov/std/hpv/stdfact-hpv.htm). About 14 million Americans become newly infected with HPV every year.
- There are more than 120 types of HPV.
- HPV infection can lead to different health issues, including cancer. Almost 31,000 cases of HPV related cancers are diagnosed in the US every year. (https://www.cdc.gov/hpv/hcp/need-to-know.pdf ).
- According to the CDC, cervical cancer used to be the leading cause of cancer death in the US. (https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/cervical/statistics/). This is no longer the case but HPV infection and associated cancers continue to be public health issues, especially in Arkansas. For example, there are more cases of cervical cancer in Arkansas than in any other state. (https://nccd.cdc.gov/uscs/cancersrankedbystate.aspx).
- There is a vaccine to prevent HPV related cancers – the HPV vaccine called Gardasil-9.
- The good news is that there is a way to prevent cervical cancer with the HPV vaccine.
- At Harding University College of Pharmacy, we are aware of this higher rate of cervical cancer in Arkansas. Since 2009, we have been working to educate our community about the risks of HPV infection and the cancer prevention available through the HPV vaccine.
- We want to encourage all Arkansans ages 9-26 to receive the HPV vaccine.
- The HPV vaccine is a safe and highly effective vaccine to prevent cervical cancer. HPV vaccines have been on the market for over 10 years and have a proven track record of safety and efficacy.
- The HPV vaccine for males and females ages 9-26.
- Males and females ages 9-14 need two doses of HPV vaccine. This is a new recommendation making it simpler for parents to get their children protected.
- Males and females ages 15-26 need three doses of HPV vaccine.
- The best time to get the HPV vaccine is 11-12 years of age when the other CDC recommended adolescent or junior high shots (Tdap & meningococcal) are given.
- Personally, as a mother of five children, I am thankful for the cancer prevention available through the HPV vaccine. My two teenage daughters are fully vaccinated and my 11 year old son will receive his first dose of HPV vaccine next month.
- The healthcare community agrees the HPV vaccine is a mandatory vaccine.
- Public health experts from the CDC, the Arkansas Department of Health, and the Arkansas Pharmacists Association, understand this is a safe and effective vaccine that all males and females ages 9-26 should receive.
- I highly recommend the HPV vaccine.
HUCOP is so proud of Dr. Smith and Jessica!