Physician attitudes on the HPV vaccine

Romy Ghosh, The University of Texas School of Public Health


The quadrivalent HPV vaccine was developed primarily for the prevention of cervical cancer. The vaccine, originally approved for females, was recently approved by the American Committee for Immunization Practices to be administered to males, allowing federal programs to pay for the vaccination for both males and females. However, uptake for this vaccination has been low. Studies show that physicians have great influence over whether or not parents decide to vaccinate their children. In this study, a survey was mailed out asking physicians about their attitude towards the HPV vaccination and what they believed to be the barriers to the vaccination of their patients. The analysis of the data included descriptive statistics and chi-square analysis in order to compare the differences in responses between male and female patients. The vast majority of physicians supported the vaccination of both females and males. However, the perceived barriers to vaccinating females differed from males, with physicians believing that parents' concern about sexual promiscuity was a greater barrier to vaccination in girls than boys (p=0.007). The other major significant difference in perceived barriers among physicians is the belief that physicians in general are less likely to promote the vaccination in males compared to females (p=0.01). Despite evidence to the contrary, it seems more patient education is needed regarding sexual promiscuity and its association with the HPV vaccine. There may also be a need for increased physician education regarding the use of the HPV vaccine for male patients.

Subject Area

Public health|Oncology

Recommended Citation

Ghosh, Romy, "Physician attitudes on the HPV vaccine" (2013). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1541273.