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Vaccine up for debate September 24, 2007

Posted by Dreamhealer in Cancer.
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Monday September 24, 2007School-aged girls in Lloydminster will not be offered the papilloma virus vaccine through the public school division.
“We adopted teaching awareness of sexually transmitted diseases,” said Michael Diachuk, director of education for the Lloydminster Public School Division. “This is still a family issue as to whether they want their girls to have or not to have the vaccine.”
HPV is a sexually-transmitted disease that may cause mild pap test abnormalities or genital warts and can lead to infertility and cervical cancer later in life. Condoms do not prevent the transmission of the virus that affects about 20 million people.

There are currently four other Canadian provinces – Ontario, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia – that offer the HPV vaccine to girls in Grades 6 to 8, but Diachuk says it is not education’s role to be advocating the vaccine.
“This is still a voluntary process here and based on that alone the decision should be left to the parent and the child,” he said. “I wouldn’t see advocating for or against and I can’t see opening those doors for girls that are as young as nine years old to say they have to have the HPV vaccine.”
Diachuk maintains studies have been done showing that abstinence goes a long way in reducing teen pregnancy and transmission of HPV and other STDs.
According to the Saskatchewan Health Department, about 45 new cases of HPV are reported each year in Saskatchewan, and many women don’t find out they have it until they are unable to conceive children or develop cervical cancer.

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