Rehn-Kivi: It is now possible to completely eradicate cancers caused by human papillomavirus

Saturday 4 March was International HPV Awareness Day. HPA (human papillomavirus) can cause cervical and throat cancers, as well as serious genital warts. MP Veronica Rehn-Kivi (SFP), member of the Social Affairs and Health Committee and chair of the parliamentary vaccine task force, has lodged a written question demanding more effective measures to completely eradicate HPV from Finland.

“Since 2020, Finland has offered HPV vaccines equally for girls and boys. I am very pleased that the boys’ HPV vaccine was included in the national vaccination programme during the last cabinet negotiations, on my and SFP’s initiative. In this way we have contributed to preventing and eradicating serious risks to health and life in an effective, fair, equitable and cost-efficient manner. There are significant regional differences in HPV immunisation coverage in Finland, however, and our country’s overall level is significantly lower than that of the other Nordic countries,” Rehn-Kivi says.

In February 2021, the European Commission published its comprehensive Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan. Eradicating HPV-linked cancers through immunisation is one of the plan’s flagship initiatives. The EU’s target is to bring immunisation coverage among girls to above 90% by 2030, and to raise it significantly among boys.

“Although HPV vaccinations have got off to a good start in Finland, measures are needed to increase awareness and understanding of their significance. Immunisation is one of the best preventive measures against these unnecessary, high-risk cancers,” Rehn-Kivi says.

In her written question to the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, Rehn-Kivi asks for measures that will lead to swift commitment by Finland to the EU’s target to eradicate HPV-linked cancers through immunisation by 2030.

“I hope the next government will take this matter seriously. It is now the time and the opportunity for Finland to make history, through effective implementation of its national vaccination programme, by being one of the first countries in the world to eradicate HPV-linked cancers,” Rehn-Kivi says.

Link to the written question:

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