28 January 2011
The rapid uptake of the cervical cancer vaccine in the UK has made it one of the most successful programmes in the world.
According to the Department of Health, in England alone, 84 per cent of girls aged between 13 and 14 have adhered to the three-dose preventative treatment.
Meanwhile, for those in the second year of the programme - girls aged between 12 and 13 - 76 per cent have had all three doses.
Cervarix, which inhibits the sexually-transmitted human papillomavirus, which causes most cases of cervical cancer, is administered over a six-month period and some four million doses have been given in the two years since the mass vaccination programme started.
The department of health also showed that of girls aged between 12 and 19, 60 per cent had completed the vaccination programme.
Public health minister Anne Milton said: "Being able to help protect young women against this disease is a fantastic development and the uptake is very encouraging."
He added: "But we can always do more.
"I would ask every girl between 12 and 18 who has not considered vaccination or who has not completed the full course to speak to their school or GP."
According to Cancer Research UK, cervical cancer is the 11th most common form of the condition in women and affects around 3,000 women a year.
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