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DOH to Encourage HPV Vaccination at Age 9

Jamilia Sherls-Jones, DNP, MPH, RN, CPN, CDP
Director, Office of Immunization
Division of Prevention and Community Health
Washington State Department of Health

In July 2022, the Vaccine Advisory Committee passed a motion to request that the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) take action to encourage HPV vaccination at age nine. This motion was approved by DOH. In accordance with the motion, on January 20th, 2023, DOH will be making a change to the IIS guidance to reflect the recommendation to administer HPV vaccine starting at age 9. The week before the rollout, a message will be sent to providers and other IIS users in Washington State notifying them about this upcoming change. Following the IIS change and going forward, a letter will be sent to providers annually as a continued reminder about the importance of early HPV vaccination. This letter will include resources to assist health care providers in their efforts to vaccinate starting at nine. Starting in January, DOH will also begin to monitor and track HPV vaccine coverage in the 9-10 age group, as an additional metric, at both the state and county level. HPV coverage data for the 9-10 age group will then be posted to the immunization dashboard beginning in early 2024.