An East Texas Woman Diagnosed With HPV Agrees With Governor Perry - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

2/6/07-Longview

An East Texas Woman Diagnosed With HPV Agrees With Governor Perry

It's a vaccine that can protect your child from cancer but many East Texans are against a vaccine, that would help prevent the leading cause of Cervical Cancer.  Governor Rick Perry mentioned his reasons behind his executive order for 11 and 12 year old girls to get the HPV vaccine during his State of State Address.

"I understand the concern some of my great and dear friends have about requiring this vaccine, which is why parent can opt out if they so choose.  But I refuse to look a young woman in the eye who suffers from this form of cancer and tell her we could have stopped it but we didn't," says Governor Rick Perry.

We have heard from East Texans who opposes Perry's decision.  Now, we hear from an East Texas woman who was diagnosed with HPV and agrees with Governor Perry's decision.

"I was diagnosed with HPV. The pap smear came back abnormal.  It's very scary and it's also very shameful," says Helena Harvey of Longview.

Helena is 32 years old and is a mother of two. When she was first diagnosed with HPV, she decided to undergo several different types of treatment.

"I have had to have 2 biopsies and they are very painful, very painful. I would not wish that on my worst enemy," says Helena.

But after 4 years of treatments, she and her husband decided their was only one option left.

"We knew that we weren't having any more children so I went ahead and had a hysterectomy. It was to the point that it was not bearable anymore," says Helena.

That's why she is thankful for Governor Perry's executive order on the HPV vaccine. She hopes parents will give their daughters the vaccine.

"They are not doing it for the kids that they are now. They are doing it for the women that they are going to become, because every child grows up.  If you can save your daughter so much pain in the long run.... Why would you not do that," says Helena.

She says she knows the vaccine is expensive, at $360 for a series of 3 shots, but says her daughter will get the vaccine when she's old enough.... because it's a small price to pay.

"Can you really put a price on your child's health?" asks Helena.

Here is what other East Texans had to say. These are emails that disagree with Governor Perry.

"Why is it that the government have to tell us what shots are children need. My daughter is 10 and going to sixth grade next year. She will not be getting these shots," says JoAnn.

"I believe it is a horrible idea to legislate such a decision without the people having the ability to decide what is best for their children," says Harry.

Karolyn Davis, reporting.  kdavis@kltv.com

 

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