Our thanks to Mike P for this. The start of the piece:
The NHS is refusing to give teenage boys an inexpensive vaccine that grants long-term protection against Britain’s fastest-growing form of cancer – on the grounds that it is cheaper to treat deadly tumours later in life.
The jab grants immunity to the human papillomavirus (HPV), and has been provided free to all girls aged 12 to 13 since 2008 because HPV causes cervical cancer.
But it is now known it also causes ‘oropharyngeal’ cancer of the tongue, mouth and throat, whose incidence is rocketing, as well as tumours of the genitals and anus.
Vaccinating boys would cost an additional £22million a year – against a total NHS UK budget of £148billion. But according to Treasury rules, vaccinating boys is not thought ‘cost-effective’, even though HPV cancer patients face months of expensive, agonising treatment.
We covered the issue of gender differences in healthcare provision in our 2015 manifesto (pp. 61-5). At that time £150m p.a. was being spent on the national screening programme for cervical cancer, plus a sum vaccinating girls, we assume about the same as that estimated for vaccinating girls, £22 m p.a. So £172m p.a. is being spent to reduce and detect cervical cancer, and £0 p.a. to reduce and detect HPV-related cancers (the fastest-growing killer cancers) in males.