Brighton and Hove schoolgirls are being given a vaccine to protect them against cervical cancer.
The vaccination programme in secondary schools is taking place for the third year, with letters being sent to parents of girls aged 12 and 13.
Last year more than 90 per cent of eligible Year 8 girls opted to have the HPV (human papilloma virus) vaccine, which is given as a course of three injections.
This was the highest take-up rate in the South East of England, according to Brighton and Hove City Teaching Primary Care Trust (PCT).
The PCT – also known as NHS Brighton and Hove – said the three jabs protect against the viruses that are responsible for 70 per cent of cervical cancer cases.
School nursing teams carry out most of the vaccinations.
There are also clinics for girls who miss the school sessions or need to be vaccinated outside school.
Girls aged 16 to 18 should contact their GP surgery to have the vaccination.
Specialist immunisation nurse Rosanna Raven said: “More than 5,000 girls in Brighton and Hove have received the HPV vaccination over the last two years.”
She urged girls who are invited to have the vaccination to take up the offer, saying: “This course of vaccinations builds up immunity to the main viruses which cause cervical cancer and will help to prevent many girls from suffering with this disease in the future.”
Clinic appointments, plus catch-up immunisations for girls who have missed school HPV appointments, either this year or in the past two years, can be arranged by calling 01273 267318.
Anyone who would like more information about the HPV programme can speak to their school nurse, call Rosanna Raven on 01273 275473 or visit www.nhs.uk.
The PCT administers the vaccination programme locally with Brighton and Hove Children and Young People’s Trust.
The CYPT is run jointly by the PCT and Brighton and Hove City Council.