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Dr. Julia Richerson of Louisville named ‘HPV Vaccine Is Cancer Prevention Champion Award’ recipient

Julia Richerson, MD, FAAP, of Family Health Centers Iroquois office in Louisville, has been named an HPV Vaccine Is Cancer Prevention Champion Award recipient for her outstanding efforts to protect adolescents in Kentucky from cancers caused by HPV. Dr. Richerson is recognized for her efforts to achieve high HPV vaccination rates in her practice.

Led in partnership by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Association of American Cancer Institutes, and the American Cancer Society, the HPV Vaccine Is Cancer Prevention Champion Award Program recognizes clinicians, clinics, practices, groups, and health systems that are going above and beyond to foster HPV vaccination in their community. This year, the award program is honoring champions from 32 states.

Dr. Julia Richerson

Dr. Richerson, a pediatrician, has been practicing in Louisville for 15 years at the Family Health Centers Iroquois office, where she supports innovative collaboration, not only in her own practice – which has an 83 percent HPV vaccine completion rate for adolescents – but also across the state and nationally.

She has served as chair of the Kentuckiana Health Collaborative’s Performance Measure Alignment Pediatric Committee and as chair of the Committee on Practice and Ambulatory Medicine for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), as well as on several task forces and in various advisory roles for the AAP. Her complete profile can be viewed at https://www.cdc.gov/hpv/champions/2018-winners.html#ky.

The HPV vaccine is important because it protects against cancers caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. HPV is a very common virus; nearly 80 million people are currently infected in the United States. Every year in the United States, 33,700 women and men are diagnosed with a cancer caused by HPV infection. HPV vaccination could prevent more than 90 percent of these cancers — about 31,000 — from occurring. Both boys and girls should start the HPV vaccine series when they are 11 or 12 years old and finish all recommended doses before they turn age 13. The HPV vaccine series can be started as early as age 9.

Every year, the award honors up to one champion from all 50 U.S. states, eight U.S. Territories and Freely Associated States, and the District of Columbia. Immunization programs submit nominations for the HPV Vaccine is Cancer Prevention Champion in their state or territory. Nominees must be a clinician, clinic, practice, group, or health system that treats adolescents as part of their overall patient population and must have an HPV vaccine series completion rate at 60 percent or higher for their adolescent patient population.

To read Dr. Richerson’s profile on the CDC’s website, and to learn more about HPV Vaccine Is Cancer Prevention Champion Award program, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/hpv.

From American Cancer Society

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