Free Immunisation Against Cervical Cancer

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2007 National Women's Conference
24 October 2006

Conference believes that all girls and women should, by right, have access to free immunisation against cervical cancer as soon as the vaccine is licensed. Conference also believes that it is obscene that a vaccine that it is known will save lives is likely to be made available on an ability to pay basis. Conference also believes that a lack of education and awareness should not be allowed to prevent girls from accessing the immunisation.

The vacinne is effective against the four most common viruses that cause cervical cancer but to be effective has to be given prior to someone being exposed to the viruses/being sexually active. The cost of immunisation is expected to be £180 per person. The press is already talking about there being a lucrative market for the vaccine. As we all know cervical cancer is also linked to early sexual activity which is more likely where poor sex education is given and this is more common in poorer communities.

Conference calls upon the National Women’s Committee to begin campaigning, and to advise all of UNISON’s women’s structures to join in, until free immunisation is available to all at a practical age. This should be a hard hitting national campaign directed at the government and especially UNISON sponsored MPs.

Work with relevant UNISON bodies to lobby the government for a change in the law to end this discrimination and report back on any progress at next year’s Conference.