“The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) awarded over $685,000 to HealthPartners Institute to test strategies for getting dentists to recommend the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to children and young adults ages 11-26, documents obtained by Children’s Health Defense (CHD) via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request revealed.

The NIDCR operates under the government’s taxpayer-funded National Institutes of Health (NIH).

The HealthPartners study is being conducted three years after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) added prevention of oropharyngeal cancer, a form of head and neck cancer, to a growing list of indications for the HPV vaccine — despite a lack of clinical evidence to support the claim…

The NIDCR funding covers the first two years of a six-year, $3.5 million proposal for the healthcare nonprofit to experiment with training dental providers to deliver scripted messages to their patients about why they should get the HPV vaccine.

HealthPartners will then run a clinical trial in 21 dental clinics to determine whether the training and messages lead more dental providers to recommend the vaccine, and more patients to take it.

The grant is one of nearly 50 identified by CHD in June — totaling more than $40 million — awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to universities, healthcare systems and public health departments to increase HPV vaccine uptake among adolescents.”