"We strongly support the immediate reinstitution of HPV vaccination in Japan”
On Aug 29th, 2016, Prof. Ryo Konno together with Prof. Fumimaro Takaku (President of the Japanese Association of Medical Sciences) and Prof. Katsuyuki Kinoshita (President of Japan Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists) submitted a letter with signatures of 341 researchers from all over the world to Director-General of Health Service Bureau, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW), Japan.
The letter expresses the concern that the current lack of policy commitment in Japan towards HPV vaccination and cervical cancer screening challenges the long-term health benefit for Japanese women and girls.
The HPV vaccination coverage rate dropped from 70% to less than 5% in 2013 and the cervical cancer screening coverage rate is 35%. However, fast reinstitution of HPV vaccination and catch up vaccination for girls who haven’t been vaccinated since 2013, can restore the vaccination gap. Signatories therefore urge the Japanese health authorities to immediately resume the vaccination programme.
- Sauvaget C., Nishino Y., Konno R., Morimoto T & Hisamichi S. Challenges in breast and cervical cancer control in Japan. Lancet Oncol 2016; 17:e305-12.
- Tanaka Y, Ueda Y, Egawa-Takata T, Yagi A, Yoshino K & Kimura T. Outcomes for girls without HPV vaccination in Japan. Lancet Oncol. 2016 Jul;17(7):868-9.