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Who should and should not have the HPV vaccine?

All boys and girls aged 12–13 years should have the HPV vaccine. The vaccine is most effective at this stage, before sexual activity has commenced and when the body produces more antibodies. The vaccine is provided to students of this age for free as part of the National HPV Vaccination Program.

Males and females outside these age ranges may also benefit from the vaccine – speak to your doctor to find out if it's right for you.

People who should not have the HPV vaccine are:

  • people with a yeast allergy

  • pregnant women: however research has shown no significant effect on you or your baby if you have the vaccine and later find out you are pregnant

  • people with a bleeding disorder: they should talk to their doctor before having any vaccine

  • people with previous anaphylaxis (serious allergy) to a previous dose of the vaccine or any of the vaccine ingredients. 

Parents should note reactions to any previous vaccination or medicine on the consent form when they return it to their child's school.

If you're having the vaccine, make sure you tell the person giving you the injection about any reactions you've had to vaccines or medicine before.

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It's best for students to have the vaccine in school aged 12–13 years.

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.