Campaigning for change
TCF address the Scottish parliament
Today, 11th June 2013, the Throat Cancer Foundation were invited to present our case for Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination to be extended to include boys to the Scottish Parliament Public Petitions Committee. TCF were represented by Founder and Chief Executive, Jamie Rae and Information and Support Manager, Ewan Lumsden.
TCF were asked to present their case to the MSP's on the Public Petitions Committee after we lodged this petition which asked the Scottish Government to address the failure of the current HPV vaccination policy to protect boys from HPV. Our campaign was backed by over 150 medical experts who agreed that by extending the vaccine to include boys we will reduce the number of men suffering painful treatment, disfigurement or even death because of throat cancers, anal cancer and penile cancer caused by HPV.
The presentation was a great success. Jamie made the case very well and he highlighted to the MSP's on the committee the numerous issues which are raised if the HPV vaccination is only offered to females: equality for men particularly men who have sex with men, a global and mobile population rendering "herd immunity" inadequate, an increased burden of illnesses caused by HPV not accounted for in current economic modelling and the precedent set by the US, Canada and Australia in male vaccination.
The committee have, as expected, decided to investigate this matter further and have made the decision to write to various stakeholders and canvass their opinion on the benefits of a gender neutral vaccination policy. We will be involved in that process too and look forward to progress on this vital issue.
Keep checking our website or social media pages for the latest updates on the campaign.
Hpv vaccination campaign progress report
Our petition to extend HPV vaccination to boys in Scotland has now closed. We would like to thank everyone who signed and shared the link and who gave their support to our petition. We garnered support from some of the UK's top doctors, surgeons and researchers who all agree that HPV vaccination needs to be extended to boys to save lives.
We even gathered support from TV doctor (and Twitter addict) Dr Christian Jessen, who is one of the stars of channel 4's Embarrassing Bodies. Dr Jessen has many facets to his career (tv, books, clinical practice and more) and his support is very welcome. Famous for his no nonsense and level headed approach to health , he agrees that vaccination is the sensible option for preventing HPV related cancers and other less deadly conditions, like genital warts.
The petition is closed now but our campaign continues to build momentum. We have been asked, as a direct result of the petition, to speak to the Scottish Parliament Public Petitions Committee which will give is the opportunity to put forward the case for gender neutral vaccination in person. You can still show your support by writing to your MP and asking them about HPV. The more awareness we can raise and more MP's to understand the issues around HPV the better.
Our campaign continues and you can check out the latest news right here on our website or on our facebook page.
sign the hpv vaccination petition today
Throat Cancer Foundation need your help today. We have lodged a petition with the Scottish Parliament to extend HPV vaccination to boys as a matter of urgency.
If you are not sure what HPV is or why boys should get vaccinated then head over to our HPV section for more information. HPV is one of the most common infections in the world and for the majority of people not harmful. For around 10% of people though HPV can have dire consequences including life limiting cancers. There is a vaccine though and currently it is only offered to girls in the UK, experts from the fields of oncology, surgery, public health and more all believe that vaccination of boys will save lives, simple as that.
Please show your support and sign our petition today. It only takes a moment and will make a difference.
help tHE THROAT CANCER FOUNDATION by lobbying your mp
We need your support TODAY to raise awareness of the increasing problem of throat cancer and the ways we can tackle this problem.
The Throat Cancer Foundation have raised an Early Day Motion (EDM) in the Houses of Parliament. An EDM is used to put a topic forward for debate and to raise awareness amongst MP's about an issue. We need you to contact your MP and ask them to support our EDM. This only takes a moment and you can make all the difference. The more MP's that sign, and the more awareness we raise, the more lives can be saved. Please take two minutes to help fight throat cancer. The EDM can be viewed here.
Click here and enter your postcode to find your local MP and their email address and then please send them a message. We have added a framework which you can use but please, personalise as you see fit.
Adding your voice will make a huge difference and help us in the fight against throat cancer.
Please write to your MP today for the Throat Cancer Foundation.
150 experts for gender neutral vaccination
The Throat Cancer Foundation has been campaigning since our inception for the introduction to the UK of gender neutral vaccination to protect people against the most harmful strains of HPV. While the UK has an excellent HPV vaccination programme which ensures the protection of young females, there is not the same protection for males. We have asked our clinical advisory team experts and numerous other leading medics and they agree that the sooner gender neutral vaccination is introduced the better.
To highlight this need and to put pressure on the decision makers in Government, we have been very proactive. We created a petition statement which outlines our position and asked the UK's top medical and public health professionals to sign:
We the undersigned urge the Government to address the inequity in the current HPV immunisation programme. We believe that vaccinating females only is an inadequate approach. Gender-neutral vaccination will reduce the impact of the most dangerous strains of HPV, preventing a great many cases of Cervical, Oropharyngeal, Anal, Penile and Vulval cancers.
By taking action now, we can reduce needless suffering and death, as well as cutting the economic burden of treatment for cancer and genital warts. The current HPV vaccination programme is discriminatory and leaves too many at risk of preventable cancers. We urge immediate action.
These are some of the most eminent experts in the world and leaders in the field of oncology, particularly head and neck cancer. This petition shows the need for those in Government to address the current policy and ensure that we are not lagging behind or leaving people at risk from avoidable disease. You find the petition here:
a gold standard of care
One of the main aims of the Throat Cancer Foundation is to advocate for a 'Gold Standard of Care' for those suffering from head and neck cancer. This means ensuring that all patients receive the highest possible standard of care regardless of where they live, their ability to pay or any other circumstance.
This is an ongoing campaign which can be divided into two sections. First of all we have a network of leading cancer experts and we will work with them to establish a set of protocols and guidelines as to what is the best treatment for head and neck patients.
Secondly, we will be working to empower patients to be more active in their treatment. This means ensuring people are aware of their rights in the NHS, know what questions to ask their medical team about their treatment and know how to access other services - particularly post treatment.
We are here to ensure greater communication between the medical profession and patients. By working together and creating a dialogue we can improve things for all future patients.