A Look at Racial Disparities in US HPV Vaccine Uptake

On this episode of Managed Care Cast, Leslie Cofie, PhD, MPH, an assistant professor of health education and promotion at the College of Health and Human Performance, East Carolina University, discusses his work on identifying and addressing racial disparities in human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine uptake in the United States.

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States and causes the majority of cervical cancer cases in the country.

But screening for HPV can catch the virus early and potentially prevent it from developing into cervical cancer. In addition, safe and effective vaccines against HPV exist, essentially making cervical cancer a preventable disease.

However, uptake of HPV vaccines remains sporadic throughout the United States compared with other nations like the United Kingdom, where cervical cancer is nearly eliminated in young women.

Furthermore, despite its prevalence, an HPV diagnosis gap exists among racial groups in the United States, as White women are 3 times more likely to be told they have HPV than Black women.

To dig deeper into racial disparities in HPV, Leslie Cofie, PhD, MPH, an assistant professor of health education and promotion at the College of Health and Human Performance, East Carolina University, conducted a study to understand HPV vaccination uptake among foreign-born Blacks in the United States.

Cofie’s most recent area of research focuses on understanding how the social networks, or relationships, of Black immigrants may influence their cancer preventive behaviors, including those related to HPV.

On this episode of Managed Care Cast, Cofie discusses his past research, steps to increase HPV vaccine uptake in the future, and the potentially detrimental impact the COVID-19 pandemic may have on the fight against HPV.

This episode of Managed Care Cast is part of the new AJMC® Podcast Prevention Series, bringing you the latest news on prevention advancements in disease.

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