The South Carolina Cervical Cancer Awareness Initiative

promotes statewide education and public awareness regarding cervical cancer screening and HPV vaccination cancer prevention.

About Us

Find Answers

Find answers to Frequently Asked Questions about HPV and the HPV vaccine.

Learn the Facts

Learn the facts about HPV and make the right decision for your health.

Join The Fight

Join us in the fight against HPV and get informed at a town hall event near you.


True or False?

Myths and misconceptions about the HPV vaccine.

HPV Vaccine is most effective during your late teen years.

FALSE: The HPV Vaccine is most effective when given to girls and boys between the ages of 11 and 12. Studies have shown that the pre-adolescent immune system is most receptive to the preventive benefits of the vaccine if administered during that period of maturity and prior to the onset of sexual activity. Young women and men, up to 26 years of age, can also still receive the vaccine.

The HPV Vaccine isn’t always effective.

FALSE: The HPV Vaccine protects against 70 – 90% of HPV related cancers including anal, cervical, oropharyngeal, penile, vaginal, and vulvar cancers and genital warts. Girls and boys must receive all three doses of the vaccine to insure prevention against HPV related cancers.

The HPV Vaccine causes autism or other health or mental problems.

FALSE: According to studies and data research conducted by the Center for Disease Control, the HPV vaccine is one of the safest vaccines given to children. There is no reported correlation between the HPV vaccine and the occurrence of autism or other diseases.

This is the only vaccine my child/I will get during the years of 11 to 12.

FALSE: During the ages of 11-12, recommended vaccines include: Tdap, meningococcal, and three doses of the HPV vaccine.

If I give my child the HPV Vaccine, they’ll become sexually active.

FALSE: The HPV vaccine does not contribute to sexual promiscuity. It will not protect your child against STDs, including AIDS, nor does it prevent pregnancy. The vaccine will protect your child against HPV related cancers, in their adult years. Parents are strongly encouraged to discuss sexual abstinence with their child and the risks associated with sexual behavior during the teen years.

If everyone gets the HPV Vaccine, there’s no need for my child to get it, too.

FALSE: The HPV vaccine, like other childhood vaccines, is most effective when the greater population is also vaccinated. The vaccine protects your child if exposed to the Human Papilloma Virus.


Over 200 Cases of HPV Were Diagnosed In South Carolina Last Year?
If You Are Over The Age of 12 - You Should Still Receive The HPV Preventative Vaccine.
Both Men and Women Can be Infected by HPV.
75%-80% Of Unvaccinated People Will Contract HPV in Their Lifetime.
Any male or female can "catch up" and receive the 3-dose HPV vaccine until the age of 26.
The cost of the HPV vaccine is covered by most insurance plans and is part of Medicaid vaccines for children coverage - a small price to protect all children from preventable cancers.


Videos & links to information & resources about HPV.

Young Cancer Survivor Underscores Importance of HPV Vaccine

“I thought the lump was maybe a growth or tumor of some sort, and I thought that maybe I’d need surgery, but I still expected to be in and out of the hospital that day.”

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Australia set to be first country to eliminate cervical cancer

Australia will be free of cervical cancer by 2028, aided by its national vaccination and screening programs, says a new study.

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Not Just For The Young Anymore

HPV shots now recommended for some into mid-40s. Millions more men and women could be added to the cancer prevention pool based on this new federal HPV vaccine recommendation.

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Know what’s worse than the risks of getting the HPV vaccine?

Getting an HPV-related cancer. Trust me! Article by Michael D. Becker, someone living with HPV-related oropharyngeal cancer.

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Could a vaccination prevent throat cancer?

The same virus that’s the leading cause of cervical cancer is also the leading cause of throat cancer. HPV is also the most common sexually transmitted infection, according to the CDC.

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Get smart about HPV

It starts with knowing: human papillomavirus (HPV) can cause certain cancers and diseases. Let’s be the ones that know what HPV can do. Get VERSED on HPV.
Get vocal. @versedhpv

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What Can I Do to Reduce My Risk of Cervical Cancer?

The most important thing you can do to help prevent cervical cancer is to have regular screening tests starting at age 21. If your Pap test results are normal, your chance of getting cervical cancer in the next few years is very low.

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Nurx now offers an at-home HPV testing kit

Telemedicine startup Nurx has launched a direct-to-consumer Human papillomavirus (HPV) testing kit. The addition means its customers can in the comfort of their own homes test for the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. and a cause of genital warts and cervical cancer.

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10 myths about HPV

About 14 million women & men are infected with HPV each year in the US, according to the CDC. Just two shots can protect both boys & girls from the most dangerous HPV strains and the cancers they cause. It’s now recommended for many adults up to age 45.

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Teenage boys to be vaccinated against cancer-causing HPV

Boys aged 12 and 13 in England are to be vaccinated against the cancer-causing human papilloma virus (HPV), the government has said.

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Blueberries may play a role in fighting cervical cancer

Blueberries are widely recommended as part of a heart-healthy diet, but did you know they could also play a role in fighting cervical cancer?

Researchers at the University of Missouri have found blueberry extract could make radiation therapy treatments more effective.

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Rice University Students Develop 3D Printed Training Models for Cervical Cancer Screenings

Students at Rice University, with help from Rice 360° Institute for Global Health and the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, have developed an affordable model of the female pelvic region that can be used to train and practice various procedures.

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Dr. Oz on Alarming Rise in HPV-Related Cancers Among Men

Dr. Mehmet Oz joins TODAY to discuss a new study that reveals a surprising rise among men of HPV-related cancers, which are commonly associated with women’s health. Dr. Oz offers guidance on how men can protect themselves and what you need to know.

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Blood Test for HPV May Help Predict Risk in Cancer Patients

A blood test for the human papillomavirus, or HPV, may help researchers forecast whether patients with throat cancer linked to the sexually transmitted virus will respond to treatment, according to preliminary findings from the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.

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AMIGAS promotes cervical cancer screening

AMIGAS stands for “Ayudando a Las Mujeres con Información, Guía y Amor para su Salud.” In English, this means “Helping Women with Information, Guidance, and Love for Their Health.” AMIGAS is a proven health education model.

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HPV Vaccination Linked to Decreased Oral HPV Infections

New study results suggest that vaccination against the human papillomavirus (HPV) may sharply reduce oral HPV infections that are a major risk factor for oropharyngeal cancer, a type of head and neck cancer.

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HPV vaccine: Why aren't children getting it?

Cancer is a subject of enormous complexity. And imagine this: a vaccine that can actually prevent cancer … if only people would take it. Here’s Dr. Tara Narula:

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CDC report: Nearly half of US adults infected with genital HPV

Health officials say nearly half of U.S. adults have caught HPV, a sexually-transmitted bug that can cause cervical cancer and genital warts. More concerning, about 25% of men and 20% of women had certain strains that carry a higher risk of cancer.

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Screenings, vaccinations can make SC cervical cancer-free

“I see a future when no woman in South Carolina suffers or dies because of cervical cancer. That future is a real possibility, thanks to the remarkable prevention and screening tools we already possess.”

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USC Researchers Discover New Subtype of Cervical Cancer

Researchers from the University of South Carolina say they have found a new subtype of cervical cancer that may not respond to conventional treatment.

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SC Witness Project

#PreTeenVaxScene Webinar #1 - UPDATE

Healthcare Triage: "The HPV Vaccine, and Why Your Kids Should Get It"

Exchange Club Yellow Umbrella is one of nearly 100 nationally accredited child abuse prevention (CAP) centers.

National HPV Vaccination Roundtable

Check out the pdf here.

National HPV Vaccination Roundtable – American Cancer Society.
An Open Letter to The Capital Gazette and Josh Mazer about HPV Vaccination Article

“Dear Editor of the Capital Gazette and Mr. Mazer, I am referencing your recent article titled “Guest column: HPV vaccine shouldn’t be required” It’s absolutely essential to get accurate information before publishing articles about important public health matters.”

Click Here to Read the Letter
Cervical Cancer is Preventable

More than 12,000 women get cervical cancer every year. Up to 93% of cervical cancers are preventable.

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Parents Can Help Reduce Pain And Anxiety From Vaccinations

If you’re worried, they’re worried. Staying calm is one of many techniques parents can use to reduce pain and anxiety about shots.

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American Cancer Society Updates HPV Vaccine Recommendations to Include Males

The American Cancer Society has updated its guideline for human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccination to include males.

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HPEB’s Heather Brandt leads efforts to increase HPV vaccination, reduce cancer in S.C.

Heather Brandt wears many hats. She was recently named the first Associate Dean for Professional Development by The Graduate School.

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Why Aren’t More Parents Vaccinating Their Kids Against Cancer?

The human papillomavirus vaccine is most effective when administered to pre-teens. So why do so many parents delay vaccinating their kids?

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SC scores at bottom of cancer prevention ranking

South Carolina got low scores on an American Cancer Society ranking of states for its cancer prevention programs. The report looks at 10 policy indicators.

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New Approach to Promoting HPV Vaccinations

Pediatricians talk about cancer risk, not sex, in an effort to get more boys and girls vaccinated against HPV

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