HPV vaccination can reduce cervical cancer in women. However, girls from lower socio-economic groups, some ethnic groups, and those not attending mainstream schools are less likely to receive the vaccine, and this could lead to health inequalities. 

Previous research identified misunderstandings and reluctance in relation to self-consent, among health professionals and school staff, for vaccination in girls aged 12 and 13.

In collaboration with Public Health England (South West), who were concerned about low uptake rates in some local authority areas, we are researching the practicality, acceptability and impact of current self-consent procedures. We will test and report to practitioners and policy-makers on whether self-consent can increase uptake of HPV vaccination and whether it has any effect on reducing inequalities of access.

The work is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Research for Patient Benefit Programme.


Audrey S, Batista Ferrer H, Ferrie J, Evans K, Bell M, Yates J, Roderick M, MacLeod J, Hickman M. Impact and acceptability of self-consent procedures for the school-based human papillomavirus vaccine: a mixed-methods study protocolBMJ Open. 2018 Mar 3;8(3):e021321.

Fisher H, Hickman M, Macleod J, Audrey S. Adolescent self-consent for vaccinations: protocol for a mixed methods systematic reviewBMJ Open 2018;8:e021335. doi:10.1136/ bmjopen-2017-021335

Share this page