It is currently offered to all girls in S1 but is being extended to boys as well. A spokeswoman said: “Nationally the HPV immunisation programme for boys will open in January 2020, but locally we shall be running it from March 2020, over 18 days across Dumfries and Galloway secondary schools.”
And the following year, in 2021, these boys will get a second dose as a booster, and all new boys entering secondary school will be offered it at that stage, and it will become a rolling programme. However, there are no plans for a ‘catch up’ programme for those boys who are currently beyond S1.
The Human Papilloma Virus, HPV, is one of the causes of cervical cancer and can also be a factor in some mouth and throat cancers. An immunisation programme aimed at young girls has been operating in the UK since 2008 and last year it was decided to include boys as well. This decision was based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).