AIDS Treatment News logo      

September 4, 2009

HPV Vaccine for Boys: Public Comments Welcome

"Should the federal government pay for the Gardasil HPV vaccine for boys and young men covered by government-funded health programs? The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is holding a public hearing October 21 and 22 in Atlanta to discuss this important question and would like to hear from concerned community members, both in person and in writing. ...

FDA approval is more scientific than political. The same is not true, however, when it comes to government decisions to pay for certain components of medical care. When ACIP recommended that government funds be used to vaccinate girls and young women, conservative activists objected strongly, claiming that the vaccine promoted promiscuity. ...

The mobilization of HIV and gay health activists is due, in part, to the fact that men who have sex with men have the highest rates of HPV infection and are likely to need the vaccine the most. Conservative groups are also expected to advocate against the government recommending payment for the vaccine, suggesting that it will promote both promiscuity and homosexuality.

Information about the ACIP hearing, which is open to the public, can be found on the CDC website. Written comments can also be submitted to the ACIP by e-mail at"

Read more in POZ, September 4, 2009.

Also note two articles published online today in JAIDS:

* Anal Sexually Transmitted Infections and Risk of HIV Infection in Homosexual Men; and

* Sexual Violence and HIV Risk Behaviors Among a Nationally Representative Sample of Heterosexual American Women: The Importance of Sexual Coercion.

Comment: Women usually get HPV from men, so vaccinating boys should stop some of these transmissions as well.