FSRH press statement: extension of HPV vaccination programme to boys launched today will help prevent almost 50,000 non-cervical cancers

Posted 9 July 2019

Date: 09 Jul 2019

Type: FSRH Press Releases and Statements

The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) welcomes the official launch of the universal Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine programme today. From September this year, boys aged 12-13 will be offered the free HPV vaccine for the first time, joining a programme that has been vaccinating girls since 2008. Estimates suggest that the HPV vaccine programme will lead to the prevention of nearly 50,000 non-cervical cancers by 2058, including cancers that affect boys and men such as anal and penile cancer.

Dr Asha Kasliwal, President of the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH), said:

“The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare fully supports the extension of the HPV vaccination programme to boys.

“We have been calling for gender-neutral HPV vaccination for many years so that boys can also be protected against the risk of developing different types of cancer later in life, such as cancer of the anus, penis, mouth and throat.

“Vaccinating boys will also reduce the number of cervical cancer cases in women by reducing the risk of infection in women who missed out on the vaccination.

“We encourage parents to take their sons and daughters to receive this potentially life-saving jab. If they miss out on the vaccination for any reason, they can talk to their school nurse or immunisation team about getting their boys and girls vaccinated at a later date.

“When the programme is rolled out from September this year, it will be important for NHS England, Public Health England and the Department for Health and Social Care to work together to ensure that measures are introduced to improve consistent and high uptake across the country.”



  • Information about the universal HPS vaccination programme can be found here
  • HPV vaccination programme: girls have been offered the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine free from the NHS since 2008. The first dose of the HPV vaccine will be offered to boys and girls aged 12 and 13 in year 8. The second dose can be given anytime between 6 months to 24 months after. Two doses are needed to be fully protected. Girls and boys who have their first vaccination after the age of 15 will need to have three doses.
  • Prevention estimates: the estimates are being publicised by NHS England, Public Health England and the Department for Health and Social Care and have been produced by the University of Warwick. Modelling estimates that by 2058 in the UK the HPV vaccine currently being used may have prevented up to 64,138 HPV-related cervical cancers and 49,649 other HPV-related cancers. This would be 50 years after the introduction of the HPV vaccination programme, when people who were vaccinated as teenagers have reached the age groups that would typically be affected by HPV related cancers.
  • FSRH is a member of HPV Action, a collaborative partnership of 47 patient and professional organisations, including FSRH, that is working to reduce the health burden of HPV. To achieve this, HPVA delivers an advocacy campaign that aims to achieve gender-neutral HPV vaccination. This means that all boys and girls will be routinely offered vaccination against HPV at the age of 12/13. The vaccination of boys as well as girls is supported not only by the 47 organisations that are part of HPV Action but also by the BMA, Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and a wide range of clinicians and academics. More information here
  • The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) is the largest UK professional membership organisation working at the heart of sexual and reproductive health (SRH), supporting healthcare professionals to deliver high quality care. It works with its 15,000 members, to shape sexual reproductive health for all. It produces evidence-based clinical guidance, standards, training, qualifications and research into SRH. It also delivers conferences and publishes the journal BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health in partnership with the BMJ.

For further information please contact:
Camila Azevedo
FSRH External Affairs & Standards Manager
Email: externalaffairsmanager@fsrh.org
Telephone: 02037945309