NET Health Wins Grant For HPV Vaccinations

May 16, 2014 

The NortheastTexas Public Health District (NET Health) is working to prevent cancers often found in men and women caused by human papillomavirus, also known as HPV. It’s a common virus, often without symptoms. Unfortunately, it can cause cervical cancer in women. Each year, more than 300 Texas women die from cervical cancer.

The good news is a vaccine now is available that can help prevent the disease. The HPV vaccination protects against two types of HPV that cause nearly 70 percent of cervical cancers. It helps prevent several other types of cancer in men and women as well.

Recently, NET Health Immunization Coalition in Tyler received a $1,995 grant from the Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s)  Be Wise — ImmunizeSM program to provide HPV vaccinations to more than 100 adolescents and young adults. The grant is helping the coalition with its ongoing effort to eradicate vaccine-preventable diseases in its community.  

Slightly more than half of Texas girls aged 13-17, 51 percent, receive the first HPV vaccine shot in the three-shot series, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Immunization Survey-Teen. However, only 30 percent finish the entire vaccination series. For boys, the rates are even lower. Twenty-four percent get their first shot and only 7 percent complete the three-shot series. Texas’ vaccination rates are well below the Healthy People 2020 target of 80-percent coverage for the HPV series.

“Increased awareness and administration of the HPV vaccine is critical for decreasing HPV-related cancers,” said Sylvia Warren, RN, NET Health immunizations director. 

The Be Wise — Immunize Local Impact Grants help Texas communities provide free and low-cost vaccinations to uninsured Texans. Since 2012, 26 grants totaling more than $40,000 have been awarded to Texas communities to improve Texans’ health. Be Wise — Immunize and the Local Impact Grants are funded by the TMA Foundation (TMAF), thanks to generous support from H-E-B and TMF Health Quality Institute, and gifts from physicians and their families.

“TMA Foundation and its donors are proud to support this effort because immunizations prevent serious diseases and help us live a healthier life,” said G. Sealy Massingill, MD, TMAF president.

TMA is the largest state medical society in the nation, representing more than 47,000 physician and medical student members. It is located in Austin and has 112 component county medical societies around the state. TMA’s key objective since 1853 is to improve the health of all Texans. TMA Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the association and raises funds to support the public health and science priority initiatives of TMA and the family of medicine.

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Be Wise — Immunize is a service mark of the Texas Medical Association.

Contact: Pam Udall
phone: (512) 370-1382
cell: (512) 413-6807
       

Brent Annear
phone: (512) 370-1381
cell: (512) 656-7320
  

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