States with low rates of HPV vaccinations have high cervical cancer rates, according to a study presented this week at the American Association for Cancer Research.
In this study, researchers from the University of North Carolina analyzed data from across the country.
HPV vaccines are given to a patient three times over six months and are said to protect against the most common types of HPV.
Some types of HPV can cause certain cancers, including cervical cancer — creating this possible link between the lack of vaccinations and diagnosis of the disease.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the vaccine for preteen girls and boys so it can get in their systems before they become sexually active.
To increase vaccination rates, the researchers say adolescents should visit their doctors on a consistent basis and doctors should recommend the vaccine for cancer prevention.
Researcher Jennifer L. Moss said, "We hope that the findings of our study impress upon clinicians ... that cancer prevention means recommending HPV vaccination to adolescent patients at every visit."
Researchers also found poor, black and Hispanic teens were less likely to be vaccinated.
The vaccine usually cost around $500 —which could be a cause of the disparity.
The researchers say there's a need for more programs to help low-income or uninsured kids get the vaccine.
This video includes images from Getty Images.