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HPV vaccine for girls 'meets NICE criteria'

Vaccinating twelve year old girls against human papillo-mavius (HPV) would meet NICE criteria for cost effectiveness suggests new Health Protection Agency research.

In June the Government agreed ‘in principle' to a HPV vaccination campaign, after a recommendation by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

New modelling data presented at the Health Protection 2007 conference this week analysed a ‘base scenario' of 80% coverage in twelve year old girls and a duration of protection of 20 years.

Researchers estimated a likely cost to the health service of £23,000 per quality-adjusted life year (QALY) – less than the £30,000 per QALY believed to be NICE's threshold.

The vaccine would also offer quality of life benefits, as the model estimated a positive impact on quality of life due to genital warts and cervical cancer mortality at 55-70% - if the vaccine's protection was lifelong.

Dr Kate Solden, an epide-miologist at the HPA's centre for infections, said her team were reasonably confident that their base scenario approximated the conditions in the UK, but some model parameters the model assumed had yet to emerge from the published literature.

‘There are thousands of different scenarios, but an 80% coverage has been shown in other campaigns. So our data represents the most probable scenario. We're pretty sure that the base case is quite likely and accurate,' said Dr Solden.

She added that the work had been reported to the JCVI, who would consider it at their next meeting.

HPV vaccine

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