On the national stage of presidential primary politics, Rep. Michele Bachmann is ranting that the HPV vaccine can cause permanent damage to children. The HPV vaccine is safe and over 99% effective in protecting against HPV - the cause of genital warts and linked to cervical cancer. Uptake of the vaccine is already low, with less than 1 in 3 US teenage girls being vaccinated. Coverage is worst among minorities and low income kids. 6 million people are diagnosed with HPV each year, and 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer. Her misinformed and irresponsible comments will likely do damage to public health, at least among those few who see her as credible.
The Washington Post
Posted by Rachel Weiner at 11:02 AM ET, 09/13/2011