On Monday 4 March 2024, International Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Awareness Day, Luxembourg's Ministry of Health and Social Security has confirmed that it is launching a national survey to assess vaccination coverage against papillomavirus among young people aged 9 to 20 years.

In Luxembourg, HPV vaccination is currently recommended for boys and girls aged 9 to 14, with catch-up vaccination possible between 15 and 20 years of age.

The survey aims to collect the necessary data in order to establish the current state of vaccination coverage. So, from today, all parents of children aged 9 to 17 and all young people aged 18 to 20 will receive a letter inviting them to participate in the survey open until 30 April 2024. The questionnaire in line will be accessible via a QR code indicated in the letter.

The survey carried out by the Epidemiology and Statistics Department of the Health Directorate is an initiative which will also help to understand behaviours towards vaccination to improve vaccination coverage against papillomavirus in Luxembourg.

What is HPV?

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the name given to a common group of viruses (100+ different types); while they do not cause problems in most people, some types can cause genital warts or cancer. HPV affects the skin. It affects around 80% of men and women at least once in their lives. Although most infections go away on their own, HPV can cause serious health problems, including cervical cancer, and also cancers of the oropharynx, penis, anus and of the vulva.

Protecting young people against HPV

HPV vaccination is recognised as an effective measure to prevent HPV-related diseases, such as cervical cancer or condyloma. Vaccinating young people between the ages of 9 and 14 can significantly reduce the risk of cancers linked to these viruses.

“It is essential that we have comprehensive data to assess vaccination coverage to effectively protect the health of our young people. We will thus be able to adapt our public health interventions and ensure that everyone has equitable access to preventive measures against diseases linked to the papillomavirus,” specified the Minister of Health and Social Security, Martine Deprez.

For more information on HPV vaccination and how to participate in the survey, see sante.lu/hpv