(HealthDay News) – Since 2006, a year after the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices expanded the vaccination schedule for adolescents, vaccination coverage has increased, but vaccination against the human papillomavirus (HPV) in females lags behind other routine vaccinations, according to research published in the Aug 31 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

Christina Dorell, MD, of the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from the National Immunization Survey-Teen to assess vaccine coverage for children 13–17 years of age.

The researchers found that, from 2010–2011, coverage of tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine, meningococcal conjugate (MenACWY), and HPV vaccines all increased, but the increase of HPV vaccine coverage among girls was only half the increase seen in Tdap and MenACWY vaccines. This was the third year in a row that this trend was noted.

“Stronger health care provider recommendations for HPV vaccination, implementation of reminder/recall systems, elimination of missed opportunities for vaccination, and education of parents of adolescents regarding the risk for HPV infection and the benefits of vaccination are needed to protect adolescents from HPV-related cancers,” the authors write.

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