Afternoon Round-Up reports that the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommended today that 11 and 12 year-old girls are routinely vaccinated against HPV, and that the vaccine can be administered to girls as young as 9 at a doctor’s discretion.

The committee’s vote was unanimous, with two of the 15 members abstaining because of they have worked on Merck-funded studies. The committee also voted to add the HPV vaccine to the coverage list for the federal Vaccines for Children program, which pays for immunizations for uninsured and underinsured children.

If you remember, the article in Nerve I posted about yesterday pointed out how crucial it was that the committee recommend that the HPV vaccine should be added to the coverage list for the federal Vaccines for Children program:

ACIP also recommends whether a vaccine should be included in the Vaccines for Children program, run by the CDC. (This is crucial if poor people — those most at risk for sexually transmitted diseases — are to get the vaccine. The Vaccines for Children program supplies vaccinations to Medicaid, the uninsured and some underinsured patients, but only if the CDC designates it as recommended.)

On a more local note, it seems that a school district in Arizona is currently grappling with the sex ed issue. According to the article, the sex ed curriculum would continue to be abstinence based, but would provide students in 6-8th grades with additional information on STD transmission. The school board has postponed a decision on updating the curriculum.

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