HPV Vaccine Distribution: An Ethical Tug-of-War. Perceptions Among Latina Mothers Living in Durham, NC
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This research project examined the views of Latina mothers living in Durham, North Carolina on four major ethical dilemmas surrounding HPV vaccine distribution: mandating the vaccine for school entry, vaccinating males as well as females, allowing adolescent access to the vaccine without parental permission and requiring the vaccine for new female immigrants to the United States. Forty-five self-identified Latina mothers living in Durham, NC participated in six focus groups conducted in Spanish between September – October 2009. Latina mothers showed high acceptance of the vaccine in general, but voiced low desire to vaccinate their own daughters. Participants also favored conservative approaches to its distribution. Mothers opposed a school mandate, believing parental and individual autonomy should be respected, but were in favor of vaccinating males to protect them from HPV and related diseases. Participants also believed parental consent should be required for adolescent vaccination, because parents have a right and responsibility to be involved in the decision. Lastly, Latina mothers disagreed with the immigrant requirement, calling it a form of discrimination and racism. Cultural factors did influence some of participants’ views; however, the majority of opinions expressed were similar to those encountered in the literature for other groups. The HPV vaccine has the potential to reduce cervical cancer incidence among Latinos; however, mothers must be better informed about the vaccine, which could increase their desire to vaccinate their own daughters. The vaccine’s affordability within the Latino community must also be considered.
DepartmentPublic Policy Studies
DescriptionPPS Honors Thesis
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Rights for Collection: Undergraduate Honors Theses and Student papers