Targeted human papillomavirus vaccination for young men who have sex with men in Australia yields significant population benefits and is cost-effective

Lei Zhang, David G. Regan, Jason J. Ong, Manoj Gambhir, Eric P.F. Chow, Huachun Zou, Matthew Law, Jane Hocking, Christopher K. Fairley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Background: We investigated the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a targeted human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination program for young (15-26) men who have sex with men (MSM). Methods: We developed a compartmental model to project HPV epidemic trajectories in MSM for three vaccination scenarios: a boys program, a targeted program for young MSM only and the combination of the two over 2017-2036. We assessed the gain in quality-adjusted-life-years (QALY) in 190,000 Australian MSM. Results: A targeted program for young MSM only that achieved 20% coverage per year, without a boys program, will prevent 49,283 (31,253-71,500) cases of anogenital warts, 191 (88-319) person-years living with anal cancer through 2017-2036 but will only stablise anal cancer incidence. In contrast, a boys program will prevent 82,056 (52,100-117,164) cases of anogenital warts, 447 (204-725) person-years living with anal cancers through 2017-2036 and see major declines in anal cancer. This can reduce 90% low- and high-risk HPV in young MSM by 2024 and 2032, respectively, but will require vaccinating ≥84% of boys. Adding a targeted program for young MSM to an existing boys program would prevent an additional 14,912 (8479-21,803) anogenital wart and 91 (42-152) person-years living with anal cancer. In combination with a boys' program, a catch-up program for young MSM will cost an additional $AUD 6788 ($4628-11,989) per QALY gained, but delaying its implementation reduced its cost-effectiveness. Conclusions: A boys program that achieved coverage of about 84% will result in a 90% reduction in HPV. A targeted program for young MSM is cost-effective if timely implemented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4923-4929
Number of pages7
Issue number37
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sept 2017


  • Cost-effectiveness analysis
  • Human papillomavirus
  • Mathematical modelling
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Vaccination

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