HealthDay News — Most male adolescents in the United States are not receiving the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine alongside their other scheduled inoculations, largely because doctors fail to recommend it or adequately explain its benefits to parents, according to a report published online Oct. 26 in Pediatrics.
Parents most often do not get the HPV vaccine for their boys because their health care provider did not recommend it, according to researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That reason was given by 24% of parents whose 13- to 17-year-old sons had not received the shots, when asked as part of the CDC’s annual survey on teen vaccinations.
Parents also commonly cite a lack of understanding about the vaccine, said report coauthor Shannon Stokley, MPH, PhD, associate director of science at the CDC’s immunization services division. About 19% of parents believed that the vaccine was not needed, 16% said they did not know enough about it, and 7% had safety concerns, according to the report.
“We need to work with health care providers so they are making strong recommendations and communicating with their patients about the need for this vaccine,” Dr. Stokley told HealthDay.