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Human Papillomavirus

Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is a family of very common and contagious viruses.

  • It is responsible for almost all cervical cancer cases, as well as other cancers including mouth, throat, anal and penile cancers, as well as genital warts.
  • It is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in Canada – three in four Canadians will be infected by HPV at least once in their lifetime. Because most sexually active people who have HPV are unaware that they have it, the infection is often passed unknowingly on to partners. 

The HPV vaccine is free to all Grade 7 students in Ontario as part of the provincial Grade 7 School Immunization program.

If you are over the age of 18 and want to get the HPV vaccine, talk to your doctor or call the health unit. You can buy the vaccine with a prescription and it may be covered through private insurance. Men who have sex with men can get the HPV vaccine for free until their 27th birthday.

The HPV vaccine can help prevent cancer and save lives!

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