A multistakeholder roundtable discussion sets the next steps to facilitate higher HPV vaccine uptake in Slovakia

Round table discussion in Slovakia about HPV vaccination
Daniela Filakovska
MSc. Daniela Fiľakovská

Department of Health Psychology and Research Methodology, Faculty of Medicine, PJ Safarik University, Kosice, Slovak Republic

RIVER-EU country coordinators from the Pavol Jozef Šafárik University (UPJS), participated in a roundtable in Košice in March that was dedicated to the fight against HPV caused cancers.

Daniela Filakovska, Senior Researcher at UPJS and RIVER-EU coordinator for Slovakia joined a broad range of stakeholders from the country’s public health sector at the roundtable. Representatives included the Ministry of Health, health insurance companies, community professionals, patient organisations, self-governing regions, and public health authorities. Invited participants discussed potential activities aimed at preventing HPV-related cancer and projects for the coming year.

Five crucial next steps to facilitate higher HPV vaccine uptake were outlined in the roundtable discussion report. Those steps are as follows:

  1. Expand health insurance coverage of the HPV vaccination for 13-14-year-old children (or for 9-14-year-old children).
  2. Expand the collection and availability of HPV vaccination data.
  3. Introduce reimbursement schemes for medical professionals who administer the HPV vaccination.
  4. Support the implementation of HPV-related cancer prevention programmes (educational activities and mass vaccination events) in self-governing regions.
  5. Focus on educational efforts in schools including those from underserved and marginalised groups to raise HPV awareness and prevention in both boys and girls.

Thanks to the RIVER-EU research conducted in Slovakia, marginalised, and underserved communities are not overlooked in high level discussions.

The proposed next steps are in line with the up-to-date findings and resulting recommendations of the RIVER-EU project. UPJS are happy to take part in such discussions in the interest of underserved communities in Slovakia.