If you agree that HPV vaccinations should be offered to all boys as well as girls in the UK and want to support the work of HPV Action, you can make a difference:
If you are a patient, professional or similar organisation, join HPV Action. To find out more, contact us at email@example.com.
Write to your local MP asking for his/her support. A template letter to MPs about the importance of vaccinating boys can be downloaded here. You can find contact details for MPs via http://findyourmp.parliament.uk/.
Write to the Minister for Public Health, Nicola Blackwood MP, at Department of Health, Richmond House, 79 Whitehall, London SW1A 2NS.
Make a donation, however small or large, to support the work of HPV Action via JustGiving
Sign our petition to help us reach our target of 100,000 signatures in 2014.
MPs and ministers take more notice of emails and letters if they are composed by the sender. Mass-produced mailings have less impact. But here are some key points you could include when writing to your MP and/or public health minister Jane Ellison MP:
Men are increasingly affected by HPV-related diseases, including head, neck, penile and anal cancers and genital warts.
It is unfair that women are protected by a vaccination programme and men are not.
Men are not adequately protected by a girls-only vaccination programme because they can be infected with HPV through sexual contact with non-vaccinated girls (from the UK or other countries) or with other men.
Men who have sex with men are most at risk because they get no protection from a girls-only programme. But vaccinating just men who have sex with men is not a good solution because vaccination is most effective at an age before sexual activity takes place (that is why girls are vaccinated at 12/13 years of age). But it would be impractical as well as unethical to select 12/13 year old boys for vaccination by asking them if they might at some point in the future have sex with another man.
More women would be protected from HPV-related diseases, including cervical cancer, if boys were also vaccinated.
It is unfair on girls to expect them to take sole responsibility for tackling HPV. It is a gender-neutral virus that requires a gender-neutral vaccination programme.