P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 2, 2007
AUSTIN -- Having passed both the House and the Senate, HB 1379 today was sent to the governor's desk, paving the way for an awareness campaign to educate Texans about the Human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted disease that is the leading cause of cervical cancer, and the new vaccine available to immunize women and girls against it.
"More Texans are familiar with HPV now than they were when session began, and that is a good thing," said State Senator Jane Nelson, R-Lewisville, who sponsored the bill in the Senate. "We have had a healthy dialogue. Both chambers have approved strong educational initiatives. Now parents will have all the information they need to decide whether to vaccinate their children, which is exactly how it should be."
The House agreed with Senate amendments to HB 1379, which contains the following provisions:
- Directs the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) to produce educational materials on HPV, the vaccine, its effectiveness, and contraindications;
- Directs DSHS to develop and maintain an Internet website on which the public and health care professionals can access information about how women can protect themselves against cervical cancer, including information about pap smears, HPV and the HPV vaccine;
- Directs DSHS to collaborate with the Texas Cancer Council or its successor entity to develop educational programs for parents regarding cervical cancer, HPV, and related preventive health measures.