Published: February 23, 2021
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By: Leila Lawson, California State University-San Marcos
Category: Public Health
Hashtags: #Health #Healthcare_attitudes #healthcare_policy #hpv #HPVvaccine #publichealth #Research
HPV is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections within the United States with an estimated 1 million new cases of genital warts diagnosed and an estimated 35,000 people being affected by HPV-related cancer each year (CDC, 2020). With over 40 strains of HPV, most have minute symptoms and have no long-lasting effects, whereas other strains can be detrimental to an individual's health. College-campus males are a population that can inform researchers on the gaps occurring between vaccination efforts and vaccination initiation. HPV vaccination is an effective preventative medicine for HPV and HPV related illnesses. The purpose of this study was to contextualize and understand college campus males’ attitudes and beliefs surrounding HPV and the HPV vaccine. All participants in this study displayed misconceptions about both HPV and the HPV vaccine. HPV was commonly mistaken for other sexually transmitted diseases like HIV, AIDS, or Hepatitis. Nine participants were able to recognize the name “Gardasil” but were not able to make the connection that it was the vaccine against HPV. Seven participants were positive and willing to the HPV vaccine and were willing to recommend vaccination to others. Participants also described other health concerns that college-campus males prioritize other than sexual health.