The Health Minister is today launching the rollout of the HPV vaccine for boys - describing it as a "crucial step" in efforts to eradicate cancers linked to the virus.
It'll be available to those in first year in secondary school from September, nine years after it was first introduced for girls.
Simon Harris is urging all parents to get their children vaccinated.
Vaccines save lives. Taking important steps over next month:
1) expanding hpv vaccine for boys, 2) launching new vaccine alliance to promote vaccination next month, 3) attending global vaccination summit to work with other countries, 4) passing all party motion in dail in Sept
— Simon Harris TD (@SimonHarrisTD) August 27, 2019
He said: "Today for the very first time we're announcing that from September we will offer the HPV vaccine to all boys in first year in secondary school, along obviously with all girls.
"This is a crucial step if we want to effectively eradicate HPV cancers in our country."
He added: "The HPV vaccine is a safe vaccine... it's a vaccine that has been tested international and nationally... and it is a vaccine that saves life.
"We actually have a vaccine in our country now that can help prevent cancers. I'd really encourage parents to get their child vaccinated, and we will effectively eradicate cervical and HPV cancers in our country within a generation."
The Irish Cancer Society is also urging parents to vaccinate their boys and girls.
Chief executive Averil Power paid tribute to the work of the late Laura Brennan, who became a prominent campaigner for the vaccine after being diagnosed with cervical cancer.
Ms Power said: “On a day like today, it is fitting to pay tribute to Laura Brennan, who campaigned passionately for the take-up of the HPV vaccine, which has seen a 20% increase since 2017.
"Her work, and the work of many other patient advocates, is having a direct impact on the lives of girls, and now boys, who will be protected into the future by this vaccine.”