The Family Planning Association of Hong Kong has announced that its cervical cancer vaccination service will only be provided to Hong Kong residents, owing to limited resources and rising demand.

The government recommends the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to young women for preventing cervical cancer as well as other HPV-related cancers or diseases.

HPV vaccine
File photo: GovUS.

In recent years, mainland residents have often come to Hong Kong to receive the HPV vaccination, as such services on the mainland are unable to keep up with the high demand.

In February, the Consumer Council said in its annual report that there were only four complaints in 2015 and 2016 from mainland consumers receiving the vaccine in Hong Kong, but the number rose to 392 in 2017.

They were mostly complaints from mainland consumers who paid middlemen in order to receive the vaccine in Hong Kong, but the vaccination could not take place owing to short supply.

The Family Planning Association is also responsible for conducting the “Free Cervical Cancer Vaccination Pilot Scheme” funded by the Community Care Fund, a three-year programme announced earlier this month.

The Association said the recent large number of requests for the cervical cancer vaccination had exceeded its limited resources.

“As a charitable organisation registered in Hong Kong, the Association’s priority is to provide sexual and reproductive health service to Hong Kong residents,” it said in a notice. “We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.”

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.