Public Health Benefits of Routine Human Papillomavirus Vaccination for Adults in the Netherlands: A Mathematical Modeling Study

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Background. Expanding routine human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination to adults could be an effective strategy to improve prevention of HPV infection and cervical cancer.

Methods. We evaluated the following adult vaccination strategies for women only and for both women and men in addition to the current girls-only vaccination program in the Netherlands, using the established STDSIM microsimulation model: one-time mass campaign, vaccination at the first cervical cancer screening visit, vaccination at sexual health clinics, and combinations of these strategies.

Results. The estimated impact of expanding routine vaccination to adult women is modest, with the largest incremental reductions in the incidence of HPV infection occurring when offering vaccination both at the cervical cancer screening visit and during sexually transmitted infection (STI) consultations (about 20% lower after 50 years for both HPV-16 and HPV-18). Adding male vaccination during STI consultations leads to more-substantial incidence reductions: 63% for HPV-16 and 84% for HPV-18. The incremental number needed to vaccinate among women is 5.48, compared with 0.90 for the current vaccination program.

Conclusions. Offering vaccination to adults, especially at cervical cancer screening visits (for women) and during STI consultations (for both sexes), would substantially reduce HPV incidence and would be an efficient policy option to improve HPV prevention and subsequently avert cervical and possibly male HPV-related cancers.

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