HPV vaccine FAQ
1. Does the HPV vaccine prevent cervical cancer? Has cervical cancer ever been proven to be prevented by this vaccine?
- NO. The HPV vaccine merely provides temporary protection against some diseases that have been found people who develop cervical cancer. No cause-and-effect has been shown, and the vaccine probably wears off long before the cancer develops.
2. Why does Merck propose to give it to eleven-year-old girls? Why not give it to adults?
- Adults know enough to refuse the vaccine. 11-year-old girls are guinea pigs who won't refuse. That's all. Teachers' unions do not allow mandatory vaccination of teachers. But students at the very same schools are subjected to mandatory vaccination.
3. How many girls has the vaccine been tested on? Do you think the primary motivation behind these mandates (for some) is to use these girls as test subjects?
- Testing has been grossly inadequate. No reported tests were done on rats to check for whether it causes cancer, or birth defects when given during pregnancy. Why doesn't the manufacturer report those tests? Self-interest: manufacturers of drugs want to do as little testing as possible. They never want to do tests that might reveal flaws in their product.
- Fewer than 12,000 females received this vaccine during tests, and they were monitored for adverse effects for only a short period of time, without checking for cancer or effects on pregnancy. Among young, pre-teenage girls who are receiving the vaccine, perhaps only a few hundred were tested.
4. Does Merck even know how long the HPV vaccine will be effective?
- This type of vaccine is unlikely to remain effective for more than 5 years. Children in the 9-year-old age group have been monitored for 18 months, and there have been no studies of possible longer-term risks of the vaccine. Merck, the manufacturer of the vaccine, doesn't know because it hasn't tested it. Girls who receive this vaccine at age 13 are unlikely to be protected by it at age 18. The average age of diagnosis for cervical cancer is 48!
5. Which states have vaccine mandates for Gardasil or have considered a mandate?
- Merck poured millions of dollars into a phony "Women in Government" group designed to push for mandates in all the states. Last year, an uprising by the grassroots stopped that plan right in its tracks, and only Virginia passed mandatory HPV vaccination, and it does not go into effect until the 2008-2009 school year. On Thursday, February 21, the Education and Health Committee of the Virginia Senate killed HB188, a bill sponsored by conservative Delegate Bob Marshall (R-District 13) that would have postponed the effective date of the mandate so that further studies could be performed.
- Merck and liberals are still trying. In February 2008, there has been a big push in Kentucky, for example. Also, the District of Columbia passed a requirement, but it must be considered and approved by Congress before becoming effective.
- In February 2007, "the Associated Press reported that Texas Governor Rick Perry, who had just required HPV vaccinations for all girls entering sixth grade, had accepted $5,000 from Merck’s political action committee the same day that Perry’s chief of staff met with key aides about the vaccine."
6. Why are some concerned with Gardasil's liability and cost? How much does it cost to vaccinate one girl or woman?
- "The retail price of the vaccine is $120 per dose ($360 for full series)." Tack on administrative costs, including medical office visits in connection with the vaccine, and the overall cost for the full series is about $500 per child. Accordingly, the cost of vaccinating 100 children will be about $50,000, but only 3 out of that 100 will ever be exposed to the HPV types targeted by the vaccine. The average age of diagnosis of cervical cancer is 48 years old. Accordingly, the cost is $15,000 to $50,000 per child to possibly protect her against a cancer over 30 years in the future. Most states cannot afford this.
7. Is there any legislation currently under consideration?
- You have to watch what your state legislature is doing. This is happening at the state, not the federal, level. Every state is different.
8. What do medical groups say?
- The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, the Texas Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics do not support making this vaccine mandatory. Dr. Jon Abramson, a member of the CDC's advisory committee on immunization practices, said in a report published in the Washington Times that "I told Merck my personal opinion that it shouldn't be mandated. And they heard it from other committee members."
9. What are some risks of the HPV vaccine? Why isn't the media talking about them?
- There have already been deaths after receipt of the HPV vaccine. Many girls who receive the shot say that it is the most painful of all injections they get, and that the vaccine itself burns, unlike the "other shots [that] tend to hurt only at the moment of the needle stick, and not after the vaccine plunges in." Many girls have been known to pass out from the pain.
10. What do you say to those who equate Gardasil with the polio vaccine as being a lifesaving tool?
- There are much more effective ways to save lives than requiring people to receive the HPV vaccine. In fact, it's unclear that this vaccine will save any lives, and it may actually cause an overall loss of life.
11. Will this give girls and women a false sense of security? Do they still need regular pap smears to check for cervical cancer?
- Promoters of this vaccine may like the way it misleads children about risky lifestyles. The more effective medical tests will still be necessary.
12. What percentage of girls are receiving the HPV vaccine voluntarily?
- Perhaps 10% have received one dose, and the percentage would be much less for all three doses. Young girls are frightened into receiving this painful and potentially risky vaccine by pamphlets describing the STDs it supposedly protects against. They are often given misleading information which makes the vaccine sound like foolproof protection against cervical cancer.