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Schoolgirls in Scotland to Be Vaccinated Against Cervical Cancer

by VR Sreeraman on September 2, 2008 at 11:37 AM
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 Schoolgirls in Scotland to Be Vaccinated Against Cervical Cancer

Schoolgirls in Scotland became the first in the UK to get immunised against cervical cancer on Monday.

Pupils aged 12 and 13 in several areas are being offered the vaccine from this week, as part of a nationwide programme announced last October.

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The programme will eventually see all girls in Britain up to the age of 18 receive the jab -- although it is not compulsory.

Scotland is the first to start the campaign as schools there started the autumn term earlier than elsewhere in Britain.

The Cervarix vaccination works by targeting the human papillomavirus, which causes around 70 percent of cases of cervical cancer.
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More than 1,000 women in the UK die every year from cervical cancer.

The vaccine costs around 300 pounds and will be offered in three doses over a six-month period.

Jeanette Cairns, a school nurse co-ordinator with NHS Tayside, one of the first areas to carry out vaccinations, said: "Girls should not feel nervous about coming for the vaccination.

"It is just a small injection into the arm that will protect them for many years against cervical cancer."

Source: AFP
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