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Public Health

PROTECT-EUROPE - Vaccinating Europe to protect against the cancers caused by HPV

Around 67 500 HPV-related cancers are diagnosed in the EU every year. They include cervical, anal, vaginal, penile, head and neck cancers.

Achieving the EU ambition of eliminating HPV-related cancers entails promotion, implementation and high uptake of gender-neutral HPV vaccination throughout the EU.

In many countries, uptake is too low to achieve the herd protection levels required for elimination of HPV-related cancer. Vaccine hesitancy is an obstacle to high uptake.

PROTECT-EUROPE aims to tackle this problem on two levels.

  • It will provide information and training for healthcare professionals involved in HPV vaccination on one-to-one communication with young people and their parents/carers. Training will be delivered online and the knowledge will then be disseminated via a train-the-trainer approach.
  • It will provide EU Member States and civil society organisations active in public health with guidance and campaign tools for promoting vaccination among young people and their parents/carers.

The campaign tools will be designed for a range of platforms, including social media, websites, posters and leaflets. The potential of sport, specifically football, as an influencer will be explored. Particular attention will be paid to addressing issues of equality and diversity.

All project outputs will be made available via an online hub and disseminated via a final report and a high-level event.

EU4health - Projects
27 JULY 2023
(174.52 KB - PDF)


Short-term effects

  • Increased knowledge and expertise in delivering HPV vaccination among Member State officials, public health organisations, individual clinicians and vaccinators.
  • Improved professional practice by clinicians, healthcare professionals, public health organisations and others.
  • More informed and effective formulation and implementation of HPV vaccination policy in Member States.

Medium-term effects

  • Rolling back of vaccine hesitancy through effective education and challenges to misinformation.
  • More informed engagement among young people and their parents/carers in HPV vaccination decision-making.
  • Involvement of non-traditional actors such as footballers and football clubs in HPV vaccination promotion.

Long-term effects

  • Higher levels of vaccination uptake, leading to the achievement of the >90% target for girls and boys and a significant reduction in cases of HPV-related cancer.
  • Curriculum development to adequately cover HPV vaccination in pre-qualification and continuing professional development training for clinicians.





Giacomo Lazzaro

Giacomo Lazzaro
European Cancer Organisation
PROTECT-EUROPEateuropeancancer [dot] org
Phone number
+32 2 775 02 00
Postal address
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