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The HPV vaccine

A vaccine called Gardasil 9 has been developed to protect against nine types of human papillomavirus (the HPV virus) which cause around 90% of cervical cancers in women (and most other HPV-related cancers in women), 95% of all HPV-related cancers in men and 90% of genital warts across genders. The HPV vaccine does not protect against ovarian cancer, endometrial cancer or uterine cancer.

HPV-related cancers include almost all cancers of the cervix, and some cancers of the anus, vulva, vagina, penis and throat.

Gardasil 9 provides fully vaccinated people with protection against nine types of HPV including:

  • types 16 and 18, the two types that cause the majority of HPV-related cancers
  • the five next most common HPV types associated with cervical cancer (types 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58)
  • two non-cancer-causing HPV types (types 6 and 11), which cause 90% of genital warts.

Gardasil 9 has been used safely in Australia's school-based National Immunisation Program since 2018. It replaced Gardasil, which protected against four HPV types and was in use between 2007 and 2017. 

Respected Australian Professor Ian Frazer and his team at the University of Queensland discovered how to make the vaccine particles, which form the basis of the HPV vaccine.

More than 350 million doses of Gardasil and 110 million doses of Gardasil 9 have been administered worldwide (as of September 2021). 

If COVID-19 has affected your opportunity to be vaccinated, see our COVID-19 and the HPV Vaccine page for more information. If people have missed their vaccinations for any reason, it’s important that they catch up as soon as possible so they don’t get left behind and place themselves at increased risk of HPV-related illness.

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The vaccine protects against nine HPV types  which cause around 90% of cervical cancers in women, 95% of all HPV-related cancers in men and 90% of genital warts.

Design and partial content reproduced with the kind permission of the New Zealand Ministry of Health.

The HPV vaccine is a prescription medicine. Medicines have benefits and risks. After reading this website, talk to your doctor about the benefits and risks of this vaccine and to check eligibility.

Females who have had the HPV vaccine still need regular Cervical Screening Tests.