Some Whatcom County residents may be eligible for free HPV vaccines at February clinic


Free HPV vaccines will be available to Whatcom County residents ages 19 to 26 during a February clinic at Whatcom Community College.

The clinic is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 10, in rooms 107 and 108 of Syre Student Center, 235 W. Kellogg Road.

The college’s nursing students are offering the vaccines through a partnership with the Whatcom County Health Department, according to a college statement. Adults within the age range and who are uninsured or underinsured are eligible to get the vaccine free, WCC said. No appointments are necessary, but participants should plan to spend about 30 minutes registering and getting the shot.

A grant from the Group Health Foundation helped fund the vaccines, the college said.

HPV, or human papillomavirus, can lead to cancer, and is most common in teens or people in their early 20s, the college said. Men and women can get the virus and spread it to others without realizing it.

HPV vaccines come in three doses, with the second given a month after the first, and the third given six months after the first, said Cindy Hollinsworth, manager of communicable diseases and epidemiology at the county health department. Bellingham Technical College hosted two earlier clinics, she said.

The larger goal for the clinic, Hollinsworth said, is to connect participants with doctors, who could then administer the other doses and provide other health care needs. But another clinic may be scheduled if vaccine is left over after the February event, Hollinsworth said.

For information, email Grace Kolodychuk with WCC’s nursing program at gkolodyc@whatcom.edu.

Kyle Mittan: 360-756-2803, @KyleMittan