Barriers to human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine acceptability in Israel include Israel's relatively low incidence of cervical cancer; the religiously-based 80% circumcision rate in Israel, which is regarded as contributing to the lower incidence of HPV infection in the country; the fact that HPV vaccine provides immunity against only few virus types; the vaccine's high cost; and the perception that HPV transmission is associated with unacceptable sexual relations. A recent survey has demonstrated that, following media two campaigns, Israeli's level of awareness of the vaccine increased but the actual vaccination rate remained low, at approximately 10%. Survey findings also indicated that an enduring barrier to HPV vaccination is the vaccine's high cost. Recent research on a convenience sample of Israeli undergraduate women 21 to 24 years of age showed that intentions to receive HPV vaccination in the coming year were a function of women's attitudes towards getting vaccinated and their perceptions of social support for doing so. Undergraduate women who intended to be vaccinated perceived the prevention of cervical cancer, avoidance of personal health threat, and avoidance of HPV infection per se to be the advantages of undergoing HPV vaccination. Disadvantages of getting vaccinated included fear of vaccine side effects, cost of the vaccine, and newness of the vaccine, doubts about vaccines, time required to undergo multiple vaccinations, and dislike of injections. Friends', mothers' and physicians' recommendations influenced women's intentions to be vaccinated in the coming year as well. This article forms part of a regional report entitled "Comprehensive Control of HPV Infections and Related Diseases in Israel" Vaccine Volume 31, Supplement 8, 2013. Updates of the progress in the field are presented in a separate monograph entitled "Comprehensive Control of HPV Infections and Related Diseases" Vaccine Volume 30, Supplement 5, 2012.
Keywords: Attitudes; Cervical cancer; Circumcision; HPV; HPV vaccine acceptability; Israel; Social support.
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