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Thank you for your interest in AB 659, The Cancer Prevention Act.
As a young woman, I had a medical condition that risked my ability to have a family and raise the beautiful daughters and grandchildren I have now. I lost a cousin to HPV-related cervical cancer and my father to cancer, including cancer of the throat. With this personal experience, I want to make sure every young person has a long, healthy life and a chance to decide to have a family someday.
Young people must take preventative measures early in life to avoid life-threatening diseases that occur from HPV. If CDC recommendations were followed, the HPV vaccine could prevent over 37,000 cases of cancer each year.
We must continue to protect our future by providing young people with all the preventative healthcare available. This includes pap smears and other screenings and the HPV vaccine, which has been proven to be safe and effective. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that young people get the HPV vaccine between the ages of 9 and 12 years because the HPV vaccine is more effective if given at an earlier age.
AB 659 recommends students entering the 8th grade be fully vaccinated against HPV, with students and their parent or guardians receiving a notification of the requirement when they enter the 6th grade. That notification will lead to more vaccinations and provides an opportunity for those with questions about HPV or vaccines to have a private conversation with their doctor or other health professional.
AB 659 will also recommend that first-time enrollees at California Public Colleges and Universities who are 26 years of age or younger to be fully immunized against HPV prior to enrollment in a California State University, University of California, and California Community College.
Due to the significant impacts of the pandemic on California’s young people, and after consultation with my constituents, parents, students and school officials, however, educational institutions covered by AB 659 will not be required to check vaccination status for admission. This means that students will not be barred from attendance at schools, colleges or universities because of their vaccination status.
This bill also will guarantee that the HPV vaccine is completely covered, regardless of health insurance status, by expanding coverage requirements for the HPV vaccine and expanding comprehensive clinical family planning services under the Family PACT Waiver Program to include the HPV vaccine for FDA-approved patients.
While this bill only recommends that students get vaccinated against HPV, I passionately believe it will result in more vaccinations against HPV, and therefore more lives saved. If we can save one more life from this preventable disease, our efforts will have been successful.
For more information, you can read my AB 659 Fact Sheet.
|A 2020 milestone study|
|Assessment of HPV vaccination rates of adolescents in CA|