Harris accepts Labour motion to extend HPV vaccination to boys

Minister for Health agrees clinical examination by Hiqa should be concluded quickly

Labour health spokesman Alan Kelly has urged Minister for Health Simon Harris to speed up the extension of the HPV vaccination programme to include boys.

Mr Kelly said the vaccine protected young girls from developing cervical cancer when they grew up, and vaccinating pre-teen boys would protect them from HPV-related cancers later in life.

Moving a Private Member’s motion proposing the extension, in the Dáil on Wednesday, Mr Kelly said there was a public health risk associated with not vaccinating both boys and girls against HPV.

“We need to get an immunity level of over 80 per cent,’’ he added.


“We have brought then motion forward because we believe it is a critical issue from a public health perspective and it needs to be progressed.’’

Accepting the motion, Minister for Health Simon Harris said it was one of the most important moved in the House in long years.

He said he shared the view that a health technology assessment, being undertaken by the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa) to determine the clinical effectiveness of any proposed changes, should be concluded as quickly as possible.

Michael O'Regan

Michael O'Regan

Michael O’Regan is a former parliamentary correspondent of The Irish Times