HPV vaccine, Perry under scrutiny

POSTED: Tuesday, September 13, 2011 - 5:32pm
UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 9:54am

It's been 4 years since Governor Perry added the HPV vaccine to the list of vaccine requirements for girls in public school.

And that decision is still being scrutinized.

Many wonder, are the side effects of the vaccine itself different from other vaccines?

"Not really, it has pretty much the same side effects of most other vaccines," Kelly Craine with the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District said.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says the HPV vaccine helps prevent cervical cancer.

And that like all vaccines, there's a small risk of allergic reaction. But any and all side effects are recorded.

"Vaccine registry, that if anyone had any kind of side effect to a vaccine, and it doesn't have to be officially documented, they can just say, as a parent you know, my child had this, or this happened after they received their shot, we have that documented. This is part of that registry and we haven't had any response to the HPV vaccine at all."

Craine believes the deeper issue with the vaccine may be the conversation between parents and child that accompanies it.

"The concern is more about, well, you're giving my child a vaccine, and they're 12 and I really don't want to talk to them about what HPV is and they're too young to learn about sex, those are really the issues at that point."

The HPV vaccine is not mandatory in Texas, and if you don't want your child to take the vaccine, all you have to do is file an affidavit."

Overall authorities say the HPV vaccine is safe.

However, the ultimate decision is completely up to the parent.


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