Online Program

Is what is good for the goose good for the gander?: A comparison of women's knowledge, attitudes and intent to vaccinate their daughters and sons against the human papillomavirus (HPV)

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sheila Murphy, PhD, Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Lauren B. Frank, MHS, PhD, Department of Communication, Portland State University, Portland, OR
Joyee S. Chatterjee, PhD, Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, University of Southern California, Marina del Rey, CA
Meghan Bridgid Moran, PhD, School of Communication, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, PhD, MPH, Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research, Department of Preventive Medicine, Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Background: The vaccine to prevent Human Papillomavirus (HPV) became available for females in 2006 and for males in 2009. Unfortunately, HPV vaccine uptake has been low – especially among males. Despite the importance of HPV vaccination in preventing diseases including oropharyngeal, anal and penile cancers in males and cervical cancer in females, according to the CDC only 34.8% of females and 1.3% of males aged 13-17 have completed the vaccine's three-shot series. Method: Random digit dialing was used to recruit 1001 Mexican-American, African-American, European-American, and Korean-American women in Los Angeles County. The survey assessed HPV-related knowledge, attitudes and intentions to have children vaccinated. Results: Only 35.3% of participants knew the HPV vaccine is approved for both males and females. Respondents felt it was more embarrassing but safer to have a son vaccinated for HPV than a daughter. Korean-Americans found the HPV vaccine especially embarrassing. Mexican-Americans found it safest. Only African-Americans felt that the vaccine was equally important for daughters and sons. Other ethnicities women felt it was more important to have daughters vaccinated. Women's intentions to get their daughters vaccinated were higher than for sons, especially for European-American and Korean-American women. Conclusion: Women may be significantly more resistant to vaccinating their sons against HPV than their daughters. Given the current low rates of vaccination and series completion, encouraging parents to vaccinate their sons may be challenging. Tailored health campaigns focusing specifically on the benefits of vaccinating boys are imperative to address the gender disparities in vaccination and reduce HPV-related diseases.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
Describe the different concerns and motivations for vaccinating sons and daughters against HPV. Identify factors to help design more effective HPV vaccination interventions and campaigns.

Keyword(s): Cancer Prevention, Health Promotion

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the principal or co-principal of multiple federally funded grants focusing on cervical cancer prevention behavior, use of narratives in health communication and ethnic differences in health related behavior and decision making. Among my scientific interests has been the development of strategies for innovative health communication campaign methods to produce stronger behavioral impact.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.