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Does My Insurance Cover Gardasil For Girls?

Does My Insurance Cover Gardasil For Girls?

What is Gardasil?

Gardasil is a vaccine created by Merck and Co. In 2006 it was approved by the FDA for use in women as a vaccination against the HPV (human papillomavirus). HPV can cause cervical cancer in women and it is estimated that more than 6 million Americans are infected with HPV every year. HPV is spread through human sexual contact and causes genital warts and may lead to cervical cancer in womena and in very rare cases, anal or penile cancer in men. Most people who contract HPV experience few or no symptoms at all. The treatment is recommended only for girls who have not been sexually active, as it does nothing to help those who have already contracted HPV. The shot protects from 4 out of more than 100 different viruses that cause HPV. Out of those 100, only about 12 have the potential to cause cervical cancer and Gardasil protects against 2 of those.

How is it Administered?

Gardasil is administered as a series of 3 shots over six months. Each one costs $120 as recommended by Merck and Co., but the actual amount charged by your doctor may include their fees or a markup on the shot itself. The vaccine is generally only offered to women between the ages of 9 and 26 because that is the age range it was tested on by Merck and Co. and when the FDA approved the vaccine they stuck with that demogratphic.

So Does My Insurance Cover the Shots?

It probably does. At this point more than 96% of health plans in the nation have provision to cover Gardasil for girls. You should check with your specific provider, but if it turns out that they do not look after the treatments and you have a hardship in paying for the vaccine, there are programs available directly through Merck and Co. that can help you get the shot for free. There are other programs available as well - some from the government - which can assist with paying for this treatment.

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