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Geisinger becomes the first member of Risant Health

Learn how to talk to your GHP Family patients about the HPV vaccine.

What can I do as a dental provider?

  • You may not be able to screen for oral HPV, but you can still promote the HPV vaccine to your GHP Family patients.
  • Clinician recommendation is the No. 1 reason patients and parents decide to vaccinate.
  • Educate your team on how to talk with GHP Family patients and their parents about the importance of vaccination.
  • Make HPV vaccination information available in your office.
  • Collaborate with your patients’ PCPs to refer patients for HPV vaccination.
  • Get up to speed with the latest training materials from the Pennsylvania Coalition for Oral Health (PCOH) and other resources.

Know the facts about HPV vaccines

  • 90% of human papillomavirus (HPV) cancers can be prevented with vaccines given at recommended ages.
  • HPV vaccines are safe and effective, provide lasting immunity and are proven to prevent cancers.
  • Girls and boys need HPV vaccines, regardless of sexual activity. Start vaccination at age 9.
  • Vaccine safety is constantly monitored. Side effects are mild and consistent with other common vaccines and there is no evidence HPV vaccines cause fertility issues.
  • The American Cancer Society, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices all endorse HPV vaccines.

Honest conversation with patients and parents is key

  • Discuss HPV vaccines on the same day and in the same way you discuss other common vaccines.
  • Be sensitive to parents’ concerns. Expect questions about safety, efficacy, what diseases can be prevented, age appropriateness, effects on sexual activity and fertility, and why you’re recommending it for boys.
  • Make sure all members of your team are prepared to answer parents’ questions about HPV vaccines succinctly and empathetically, in simple terms and with the best interest of the patient at heart.
  • Use personal examples to show you value immunization as an important part of your own family’s health.
  • Know which patients are behind on their vaccines or have refused vaccines in the past. Consider engaging them, beyond a simple reminder, to learn why they may be hesitant about vaccines against HPV or other illnesses.
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