No 4 - 2018

Free HPV for boys who feel attracted to boys
Yellow fever in Brazil

Free HPV for boys who feel attracted to boys

As from 1 February 2018, boys who feel attracted to boys can receive HPV vaccination free of charge if they are between 15 and 20 years old. The offer ends on 31 December 2018.

The offer is one of the initiatives of the government’s 4th cancer action plan. The offer aims to prevent HPV infection in boys who have or will be having sex with other boys and men. Men who have sex with men have a substantially increased risk of developing anal cancer due to an HPV infection than men who exclusively have sex with women.

The boys will receive three HPV vaccinations within a 6-month period. You can receive the first vaccination as from your 15th birthday. Vaccination is given free of charge until the boys turn 20 years old. The first vaccination must be given no later than on 30 June 2018, and the boys can conclude their vaccination until 31 December 2018.

You can be vaccinated at your GP or at one of the AIDS Foundation’s Checkpoint clinics in Aarhus, Odense or Copenhagen. When the doctor assesses if a boy is covered by the offer, he or she must inform the boy that the offer is for boys who feel attracted to other boys, and ask if the boy forms part of the target group. The boy then needs to answer yes or no.

The vaccines (Gardasil 9) can be ordered in 1-dose packages via the SSI Order Office by e-mailing or phoning 3268 3111 and stating your provider number/customer number and the vaccine’s item number 99799. If this cannot be done before the boy calls on his doctor for vaccination, the doctor may use an HPV vaccine for use in the childhood vaccination programme and order a replacement vaccine as quickly as possible thereafter.

The vaccination must be recorded using the following service codes:

8360 1. HPV vaccination
8361 2. HPV vaccination
8362 3. HPV vaccination

(The Danish Health Authority)

Yellow fever in Brazil

In recent weeks, the number of human cases of yellow fever has tripled in Brazil, particularly in the states of São Paulo and Minas Gerais. In the period from 1 July 2017 to 14 January 2018, a total of 35 confirmed yellow fever cases were detected, including 20 deaths. The confirmed cases were reported from the states of São Paulo (20 cases and 11 deaths), Rio de Janeiro (3 cases and 1 death), Minas Gerais (11 cases and 7 deaths) and the Federal District (1 death). Additionally, 145 suspected cases have been recorded.

Since the autumn of 2017, an increasing number of cases has been recorded among monkeys (non-human primates), including in parks in the city of São Paulo, why on 21 November 2017 Statens Serum Institut changed the recommendation for yellow fever vaccination to also include the entire state of São Paulo, including the city of São Paulo (in Danish). Subsequently, there have been reports of dead monkeys in the northern part of the City of Rio de Janeiro, and some of the most recent cases in the state of Rio de Janeiro were detected in Teresópolis located approx. 100 km from the city of Rio de Janeiro.

The Brazilian authorities have planned major vaccination campaigns in the States of São Paolo and Rio de Janeiro in the period from 25 January to 17 February and in the State of Bahia in the period from 19 February to 3 March. The objective is to vaccinate approx. 22 million people in 77 districts in the three states.

The annual carnival in Rio de Janeiro is held from 9 to 14 February 2018. The WHO does not currently recommend yellow fever vaccination of travellers to the city of Rio de Janeiro, but conditions may change rapidly, and doctors and travellers are encouraged to stay up to date via the SSI’s travel website (in Danish).

Since January 2017, a total of three cases of yellow fever have been detected in travellers going to South America. The two first cases had visited Bolivia and Suriname, and, more recently, a Dutch traveller was diagnosed with yellow fewer following a journey to Brazil. The traveller had stayed in Mairipora and Atibaia in the state of São Paulo from 19 December 2017 to 8 January 2018, and presented with a high fever, headache, muscle pain, vomiting and diarrhoea on 7 January 2018. The diagnosis of yellow fever was made after the patient had returned to Holland.

None of the three travelers had previously received yellow fever vaccination.
Brazil does not currently require yellow fever vaccination for travellers from other countries, and current recommendations for yellow fever vaccination for travellers going to Brazil are available at the SSI’s website (in Danish).

(A.H. Christiansen, P.H. Andersen, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Prevention)

Link to previous issues of EPI-NEWS

24 January 2018