Indian Parents Prefer Vaccinating their Daughters against HPV at Older Ages


Background: Increasing uptake of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine should be a priority in developingcountries since they suffer 88% of the world’s cervical cancer burden. In many countries studies show that ageat vaccination is an important determinate of parental acceptability. This study explores parental preferenceson age-to-vaccinate for adolescent school-going girls. Materials and
Methods: The sample was selected using atwo-stage probability proportional to size cluster sampling methodology. Questionnaires were sent home with arandom sample of 800 adolescent girls attending 12 schools in Mysore to be completed by parents. Descriptivestatistics including frequencies, percentages and proportions were generated for independent variables andbivariate analyses (Chi square test) were used to assess the relationship between independent and appropriateage-to-vaccinate.
Results: HPV vaccination acceptability was high at 71%. While 5.3% of parents felt girlsshould be vaccinated by 10 years or younger; 38.3% said 11-15 years; 14.8% said 16-18 years; 5.8% suggestedover 19 years; and 33% didn’t know. Only 2.8% of parents would not vaccinate their daughters.
Conclusions:Delaying HPV vaccination until later ages may significantly increase uptake of the HPV vaccine in India.