HPV in Ireland

HPV (human papillomavirus) is a family of very common and highly contagious viruses1. Males and females can get HPV infection. HPV infection usually clears up by itself but if not, it can cause cancers in both men and women such as anal cancer in men and cervical and anal cancers in women1.

Every year in Ireland, up to 130 people die from HPV-related cancers (100 female, 30 male)2 while globally 1 in 20 of all cancers are caused by HPV infection3. HPV can also cause genital warts in both males and females with more than 1,200 reported cases of genital warts each year in Ireland4. Irish research found that almost 75% of people do not know what HPV is and that 56% are not aware that HPV can cause cancer5. From September 2019, the National HPV Immunisation Programme offers HPV immunisation to both boys and girls in their first year of secondary school1. Immunising boys and girls will help to protect them from certain types of HPV infections that may develop into cancers later in life.

IE-GSL-00016|Date of preparation: January 2020