The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine and cervical cancer: uptake and next steps

Adv Ther. 2011 Aug;28(8):615-39. doi: 10.1007/s12325-011-0045-x. Epub 2011 Aug 1.


Infection with a high-risk type of the human papillomavirus (HPV) is a major contributing factor in the vast majority of cervical cancers. Dissemination of the HPV vaccine is critical in reducing the risk of the disease. This descriptive review of HPV vaccine uptake in papers published between 2006 and 2011 focuses on studies conducted in girls and young women. In the United States, rates of immunization as per the protocol for teens (age 13-17 years) range from 6% to 75% and those for young women (age 18-26 years) range from 4% to 79%, although the samples and data collection methods vary. The epidemiology of HPV, the mechanisms of action, protocols for vaccine immunization, rates of uptake, and barriers to vaccination at the policy, provider, and patient levels are reviewed. Various intervention techniques are described, and policy-level programs, such as legislation supporting mandates, subsidized public education, and cost-reduction initiatives, are also explored. Increased distribution of the HPV vaccine in school-based clinics, evidencebased scripts for provider counseling of young patients and their parents, concurrent immunizations to adolescents, prevention visits, greater patient education and outreach, and the dissemination of academic detailing can help to boost vaccine uptake, particularly in underresourced communities. Population-based surveillance is necessary for robust estimates of uptake over time. Additional research is needed to comprehensively examine socio-demographic, psychosocial, and sociocultural factors that predict vaccine uptake according to the protocol. Increased study of the vaccine's long-term effectiveness, in both males and females and among extended age groups, is warranted.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Papillomavirus Infections / complications*
  • Papillomavirus Infections / prevention & control*
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • United States
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / virology*
  • Vaccination / statistics & numerical data
  • Young Adult


  • Papillomavirus Vaccines