Although the advent of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine holds the promise of preventing a major female reproductive cancer and genital warts, it is recognized that several factors may impact vaccine acceptance. Parental knowledge of HPV and its relation to cervical cancer, sources of HPV vaccine information, and prior experience with a sexually transmitted infection (STI) may contribute to attitudes toward this primary prevention effort.
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of factors contributing to knowledge of HPV and parental acceptance of HPV vaccination for their 9-18 year old daughters.
A descriptive correlational study was conducted using an online survey platform. The sample consisted of 323 parents/guardians of 9-18 year old daughters from the greater New York area.
Parental HPV vaccine acceptability was measured by 4-item Likert scale. Responses of those who had not had daughters vaccinated (N = 218) were compared to responses of those (N = 105) that had already vaccinated their daughters against HPV. Those who did not intend to vaccinate were compared to those who intended to vaccinate.
There was a significant positive relationship between knowledge and prior experience; however, knowledge and prior experience with HPV related diseases were not significant predictors of HPV acceptance.
In June 2006, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) licensed Gardasil® for use in girls and women 9–26 years of age . This is the first vaccine developed to prevent cervical cancer and other diseases in females caused by certain types of genital human papillomavirus (HPV). The main efficacy studies of the vaccine demonstrate nearly 100% effectiveness in preventing cervical precancers, vulvar and vaginal precancers, as well as 90% vaccine efficacy in preventing genital warts. Over 99% of vaccinated girls in these studies developed antibodies after vaccination. Data indicate that the vaccine is effective, with no evidence of waning protection . Successful vaccination programs are expected to substantially reduce the incidence of HPV infection, the incidence of HPV-associated disease, and the economic as well as emotional burden related to HPV infection . There is a tremendous opportunity to prevent a female reproductive cancer through utilization of primary prevention tactics such as immunization. Parental acceptance of HPV vaccine may be critical in decreasing the incidence of cervical cancer, since parents are the primary decision makers for child and adolescent immunization. The purpose of this descriptive, correlational study was to examine the relationship between parental knowledge of HPV and intention to vaccinate their 9-18 year old daughters. In addition, this study examined the relationship between parental knowledge of HPV and vaccine status. This study also tested the hypothesis that parents who have had a personal history or know of someone who has had a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or cervical cancer will be more likely to intend to have their daughters receive HPV vaccination than parents who have not had a personal history or know of someone who has had a STI or cervical cancer. In addition, the relationship of these personal history variables to vaccine status was examined.’