Call for HPV vaccine to be introduced for boys

Foyle SDLP MLA Mark H Durkan
Foyle SDLP MLA Mark H Durkan

SDLP Health Spokesperson Mark H Durkan MLA has called for the HPV jab for boys to be introduced in Northern Ireland, following the recent policy decision in England.

The Foyle MLA said: “We need to bring Northern Ireland into line with the HPV decision on provisions made in England, Scotland and Wales. Whilst girls aged 12 to 13 are eligible for the vaccine, it does not go far enough. We have seen huge successes under the girls’ programme which has already reduced HPV related diseases here, in particular the cancer-causing types.

“It is essential to extend this programme to boys and provide what could prove to be life-saving immunisations. Protecting both women and men could help to make cervical cancer and other HPV related diseases a thing of the past.

“The failure to implement this policy in Northern Ireland is yet another example of the lack of equality of access to treatments suffered by patients here,” Mr Durkan added.