Promising alternative settings for HPV vaccination of US adolescents
Vaccination in alternative settings, defined here as being outside of traditional primary care, can help address the pressing public health problem of low human papillomavirus vaccine coverage among adolescents in the United States. Pharmacies are promising because they are highly accessible and have well established immunization practices. However, pharmacies currently face policy and reimbursement challenges. School-located mass vaccination programs are also promising because of their high reach and demonstrated success in providing other vaccines, but control by local policymakers and challenges in establishing community partnerships complicate widespread implementation. Health centers in schools are currently too few to greatly increase access to human papillomavirus vaccine. Specialty clinics have experience with vaccination, but the older age of their patient populations limits their reach. Future steps to making alternative settings a success include expanding their use of statewide vaccine registries and improving their coordination with primary care providers.