Chinese women in North America have high rates of invasive cervical cancer and low levels of Papanicolaou (Pap) testing use. This study examined Pap testing barriers and facilitators among Chinese American women.
A community-based, in-person survey of Chinese women was conducted in Seattle, Washington during 1999. Four hundred and thirty-two women in the 20–79 years age-group were included in this analysis. The main outcome measures were a history of at least one previous Pap smear and Pap testing within the last 2 years.
Nineteen percent of the respondents had never received cervical cancer screening and 36% had not been screened in the previous 2 years. Eight characteristics were independently associated with a history of at least one Pap smear: being married, thinking Pap testing is necessary for sexually inactive women, lack of concerns about embarrassment or cancer being discovered, having received a physician or family recommendation, having obtained family planning services in North America, and having a regular provider. The following characteristics were independently associated with recent screening: thinking Pap testing is necessary for sexually inactive women, lack of concern about embarrassment, having received a physician recommendation, having obtained obstetric services in North America, and having a regular provider.
Pap testing levels among the study respondents were well below the National Cancer Institute’s Year 2000 goals. The findings suggest that cervical cancer control interventions for Chinese are more likely to be effective if they are multifaceted. © 2002 International Society for Preventive Oncology. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
Chinese Americans; Cervical cancer; Papanicolaou testing
The objective of the study was to develop a culturally relevant video and a pamphlet for use as a cervical cancer screening educational intervention among North-American Chinese women. The project conducted 87 qualitative interviews and nine focus groups to develop a culturally tailored intervention to improve Pap testing rates. The intervention consisted of an educational/motivational video, a pamphlet, and home visits. Less acculturated Chinese women draw on a rich tradition of herbal knowledge and folk practices historically based on Chinese medical theory, now mixed with new information from the media and popular culture. The video, the pamphlet, and the outreach workers knowledge base were designed using these results and combined with biomedical information to address potential obstacles to Pap testing. Culturally relevant information for reproductive health promotion was easily retrieved through qualitative interviews and used to create educational materials modeling the integration of Pap testing into Chinese women’s health practices.
Pap testing; cervical cancer; cross-cultural medicine; Chinese; health education
North American Chinese women have lower levels of Papanicolaou (Pap) testing than other population subgroups. We conducted a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the effectiveness of two alternative cervical cancer screening interventions for Chinese women living in North America.
Four hundred and eighty-two Pap testing underutilizers were identified from community-based surveys of Chinese women conducted in Seattle, Washington, and Vancouver, British Columbia. These women were randomly assigned to one of two experimental arms or control status. Several Chinese-language materials were used in both experimental arms: an education-entertainment video, a motivational pamphlet, an educational brochure, and a fact sheet. Women in the first experimental group (outreach worker intervention) received the materials, as well as tailored counseling and logistic assistance, during home visits by trilingual, bicultural outreach workers. Those in the second experimental group (direct mail intervention) received the materials by mail. The control group received usual care. Follow-up surveys were completed 6 months after randomization to ascertain participants’ Pap testing behavior. All statistical tests were two-sided.
A total of 402 women responded to the follow-up survey (83% response rate). Of these women, 50 (39%) of the 129 women in the outreach group, 35 (25%) of the 139 women in the direct mail group, and 20 (15%) of the 134 women in the control group reported Pap testing in the interval between randomization and follow-up data collection (P<.001 for outreach worker versus control, P = .03 for direct mail versus control, and P = .02 for outreach worker versus direct mail). Intervention effects were greater in Vancouver than in Seattle.
Culturally and linguistically appropriate interventions may improve Pap testing levels among Chinese women in North America.
Chinese American immigrants are a growing part of the United States population. Cervical cancer is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality among Chinese Americans. Pap smear testing is less common in Chinese American immigrants than in the general population. During 1999, we conducted a community-based survey of Chinese American women living in Seattle. We assessed knowledge of cervical cancer risk factors and history of Pap smear testing along with socioeconomic and acculturation characteristics. The overall estimated response rate was 64%, and the cooperation rate was 72%. Our study sample included 472 women. Most cervical cancer risk factors were recognized by less than half of our participants. Factors independently associated with knowledge of cervical cancer risk factors included marital status, employment, and education. Respondents with the highest knowledge had greater odds of ever receiving a Pap smear, compared to those respondents with the lowest knowledge (OR 2.5; 95% CI: 1.1,5.8). Our findings suggest a need for increased recognition of cervical cancer risk factors among Chinese American immigrants. Culturally and linguistically appropriate educational interventions for cervical cancer risk factors should be developed, implemented and evaluated.
cervix neoplasms; Chinese Americans; risk factors
Chinese American women have high rates of invasive cervical cancer, compared to the general population. However, little is known about the Pap testing behavior of ethnic Chinese immigrants.
We conducted a community-based survey of Chinese immigrants living in Seattle, Washington, during 1999. Two indicators of cervical cancer screening participation were examined: at least one previous Pap smear and Pap testing in the last 2 years.
The overall estimated response rate was 64%, and the cooperation rate was 72%. Our study sample for this analysis included 647 women. Nearly one quarter (24%) of the respondents had never had a Pap test, and only 60% had been screened recently. Factors independently associated with cervical cancer screening use included marital status, housing type, and age at immigration.
Our findings confirm low levels of cervical cancer screening among Chinese immigrants to North America. Culturally and linguistically appropriate Pap testing intervention programs for less acculturated Chinese women should be developed, implemented, and evaluated.
Chinese immigrants; cervical cancer; Pap testing
To compare screening mammography and Pap testing among Chinese women in Seattle, Washington to Vancouver, and British Columbia.
Using community-based sampling methods, trilingual female interviewers surveyed Chinese women in Seattle and Vancouver. Multiple preventive health behaviors and health care access variables were assessed. Mammography analysis included 409 women aged 50–74 years. Pap testing analysis included 973 women aged 20–69 years. Main outcome measures were ever use and use in the last 2 years of screening mammography and Pap testing.
Chinese women in Vancouver were younger, more educated and fluent in English. Unadjusted rates of mammography and Pap testing were similar between the two cities. Provider type was consistently associated with screening in both cities; female providers had the highest rates and Chinese male providers the lowest. Adjusted logistic regression analysis demonstrated similar mammography use in the two cities. However, for Pap testing, women in Seattle had higher odds of screening compared to Vancouver.
Despite universal health care coverage and baseline characteristics typically associated with greater utilization of preventive screening services, Chinese women in Vancouver did not have higher rates of screening mammography and Pap testing compared to Chinese women in Seattle.
Chinese; PAP testing; Mammography; Preventive screening; Universal health coverage
Objective. Vietnamese American women are at the greatest risk for cervical cancer but have the lowest cervical cancer screening rates. This study was to determine whether demographic and acculturation, healthcare access, and knowledge and beliefs are associated with a prior history of cervical cancer screening among Vietnamese women. Methods. Vietnamese women (n = 1450) from 30 Vietnamese community-based organizations located in Pennsylvania and New Jersey participated in the study and completed baseline assessments. Logistic regression analyses were performed. Results. Overall levels of knowledge about cervical cancer screening and human papillomavirus (HPV) are low. Factors in knowledge, attitude, and beliefs domains were significantly associated with Pap test behavior. In multivariate analyses, physician recommendation for screening and having health insurance were positively associated with prior screening. Conclusion. Understanding the factors that are associated with cervical cancer screening will inform the development of culturally appropriate intervention strategies that would potentially lead to increasing cervical cancer screening rates among Vietnamese women.
The purpose of this article is to examine knowledge and health beliefs associated with cervical cancer screening among Korean American women. A telephone survey was conducted with 189 Korean American women in the Chicago area. Age, marital status, income, knowledge of early detection method for cervical cancer, and perceived beliefs about benefits of and barriers to receiving Pap tests were all related to outcomes of ever having a Pap test and having had one in the preceding 3 years. Variables uniquely related to ever having a Pap test were education, employment status, fluency in English, and proportion of life spent in the United States. Variables uniquely related to having had the test during the preceding 3 years were having a usual source of care and regular checkups. Different intervention components are suggested for the groups of Korean American women who have never had a Pap smear and for those who have not had one in the preceding 3 years, in addition to common intervention strategies that aim to increase knowledge and perceived benefit and to decrease perceived barriers to receiving Pap tests.
cervical cancer; screening behaviors; health behavior; symptom focus; Korean Americans; Pap smear; knowledge; beliefs
An 18-month intervention was implemented to increase breast and cervical cancer screening among poor African-American women in Chicago. Breast and cervical cancer screening programs were set up in two public clinics, one community-based and the other hospital-based. Nurse clinicians and public health workers were used in these programs to recruit women in the clinics and in targeted community institutions to receive free breast and cervical cancer screening. The following barriers were specifically addressed by the intervention: accessibility of screening, knowledge about breast and cervical cancers, access to followup screening examinations, and access to treatment. A computerized followup system was specifically designed to track patients. During the 18 months of the intervention, 10,829 visits were made by 7,654 low-income women. A total of 84 cases of breast cancer and 9 cases of cervical cancer were detected. Awareness of the program, as measured by a survey after the completion of the intervention, increased in both clinics compared with baseline results. Knowledge about breast and cervical cancers also increased, as measured by scores on tests given before and after a class on breast and cervical cancers. Followup rates were 86 percent for women attending the programs. More than 90 percent of the women referred for evaluation of breast abnormalities kept an appointment. In summary, the intervention was successful in reducing barriers to breast and cervical cancer detection and in attracting a high-risk group of women.
Colorectal cancer screening rates are low among poor and disadvantaged patients. Patient navigation has been shown to increase breast and cervical cancer screening rates, but few studies have looked at the potential of patient navigation to increase colorectal cancer screening rates.
The objective was to determine the feasibility and effectiveness of a patient navigator-based intervention to increase colorectal cancer screening rates in community health centers. Patients at the intervention health center who had not been screened for colorectal cancer and were designated as "appropriate for outreach" by their primary care providers received a letter from their provider about the need to be screened and a brochure about colorectal cancer screening. Patient navigators then called patients to discuss screening and to assist patients in obtaining screening. Patients at a demographically similar control health center received usual care.
Thirty-one percent of intervention patients were screened at six months, versus nine percent of control patients (p < .001).
A patient navigator-based intervention, in combination with a letter from the patient's primary care provider, was associated with an increased rate of colorectal cancer screening at one health center as compared to a demographically similar control health center. Our study adds to an emerging literature supporting the use of patient navigators to increase colorectal cancer screening in diverse populations served by urban health centers.
Cancer screening rates are low among Chinese American women, a mostly immigrant minority population. This is possibly because they do not receive cancer screening recommendations from their physicians. The objective of this study was to determine if the rate at which physicians recommend cancer screening to older Chinese American women differs according to the language used during visits.
Data for the cross-sectional study were collected from a telephone survey of older Chinese American women residing in the Washington, DC, area. A total of 507 asymptomatic Chinese American women aged ≥50 who had a regular physician participated in this study. The main outcome was women's self-reported perception of having received a recommendation from their physician for mammography, Pap tests, or colorectal cancer screening in the past 2 years. The main independent variable was the language used during visits (English vs. Chinese). Patient age, educational level, employment status, cultural views, physician specialty, physician gender, and length of relationship with the physician were included in the multiple logistic regression analyses.
Chinese women who communicated with their physicians in English were 1.71 (95% CI 1.00-2.96) and 1.73 (95% CI 1.00-3.00) times more likely to report having received mammography and colorectal cancer screening recommendations, respectively (p < 0.05). Physicians in family medicine or general practice were 2.11 (95% CI 1.31-3.40) and 1.70 (95% CI 1.06-2.48) times more likely to recommend cancer screening than those in other specialties.
Chinese American women who conversed with their physicians in Chinese were less likely to perceive receiving cancer screening recommendations. Future research is needed to identify physician-specific knowledge, attitude, and cultural barriers to recommending cancer screening.
Recent US data indicate that women of Vietnamese descent have higher cervical cancer incidence rates than women of any other race/ethnicity, and lower levels of Pap testing than white, black, and Latina women. Our objective was to provide information about Pap testing barriers and facilitators that could be used to develop cervical cancer control intervention programs for Vietnamese American women.
We conducted a cross-sectional, community-based survey of Vietnamese immigrants. Our study was conducted in metropolitan Seattle, Washington. A total of 1,532 Vietnamese American women participated in the study. Demographic, health care, and knowledge/belief items associated with previous cervical cancer screening participation (ever screened and screened according to interval screening guidelines) were examined.
Eighty-one percent of the respondents had been screened for cervical cancer in the previous three years. Recent Pap testing was strongly associated (p<0.001) with having a regular doctor, having a physical in the last year, previous physician recommendation for testing, and having asked a physician for testing. Women whose regular doctor was a Vietnamese man were no more likely to have received a recent Pap smear than those with no regular doctor.
Our findings indicate that cervical cancer screening disparities between Vietnamese and other racial/ethnic groups are decreasing. Efforts to further increase Pap smear receipt in Vietnamese American communities should enable women without a source of health care to find a regular provider. Additionally, intervention programs should improve patient-provider communication by encouraging health care providers (especially male Vietnamese physicians serving women living in ethnic enclaves) to recommend Pap testing, as well as by empowering Vietnamese women to specifically ask their physicians for Pap testing.
Cervical cancer; Immigrants; Pap testing; Vietnamese
We conducted a trial to evaluate the effectiveness of a cervical cancer control intervention for Vietnamese women.
The study group included 234 women who had not received a Pap test in the last three years. Experimental group participants received a lay health worker home visit. Our trial end-point was Pap smear receipt within six months of randomization. Pap testing completion was ascertained through women's self-reports and medical record reviews. We examined intervention effects among women who had ever received a Pap smear (prior to randomization) and women who had never received a Pap smear.
Three-quarters of the experimental group women completed a home visit. Ever screened experimental group women were significantly more likely to report Pap testing (p<0.02) and have records verified Pap testing (p<0.04) than ever screened control group women. There were no significant differences between the trial arms for women who had never been screened.
Our findings indicate that lay health worker interventions for Vietnamese women are feasible to implement and can positively impact levels of Pap testing use among ever screened women (but not never screened women).
Asian Americans; Cancer; Screening
To provide a conceptual description of Faith Moves Mountains (FMM), an intervention designed to reduce the disproportionate burden of cervical cancer among Appalachian women.
FMM, a community-based participatory research program designed and implemented in collaboration with churches in rural, southeastern Kentucky, aims to increase cervical cancer screening (Pap tests) through a multiphase process of educational programming and lay health counseling.
We provide a conceptual overview to key elements of the intervention, including programmatic development, theoretical basis, intervention approach and implementation, and evaluation procedures.
After numerous modifications, FMM has recruited and retained over 400 women, 30 churches, and has become a change agent in the community.
cervical cancer; rural; interventions; Appalachia
African-American and Hispanic women receive fewer indicated cancer early detection services than do majority women. Low rates of cancer screening may, in part, explain the disproportionately higher rates of cancer deaths in this population. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore through individual interviews the perceptions of barriers and facilitators of colorectal, cervical and breast cancer screening among 187 low-income, primarily minority women in four New-York-City-based community/migrant health centers. We identified various barriers and facilitators within each of these categories. Clinician recommendation was the most commonly cited encouragement to cancer screening. Other facilitators of cancer screening identified by patients included personal medical history, such as the presence of a symptom. The perception of screening as routine was cited as a facilitator far more commonly for mammography and Pap tests than for either of the colorectal screenings. Less commonly cited facilitators were insurance coverage and information from the media. The most common barriers were a lack of cancer screening knowledge, patients' perception of good health or absence of symptoms attributable to ill health, fear of pain from the cancer test and a lack of a clinician recommendation. Using standard qualitative techniques, patients' responses were analyzed and grouped into a taxonomy of three major categories reflecting: (1) patients' attitudes and beliefs, (2) their social network experience and (3) accessibility of services. This taxonomy may serve as a useful framework for primary care providers to educate and counsel their patients about cancer screening behaviors.
Health promotion practice research conducted by or in partnership with community-based organizations (CBOs) serving Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (AA and NHPI) can address health disparities. Few CBOs have the tools to integrate or initiate research into their programmatic agenda. The New York University (NYU) Center for the Study of Asian American Health (CSAAH) and the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) created a partnership with the goal to support CBO research infrastructure development by creating the Community Empowered Research Training (CERT) program.
A survey was conducted and discussions held with CBO leaders representing AA and NHPI communities to inform the development of the CERT program.
The majority of participants are engaged in service-related research and reported interest in building their research capacity. CBOs may require help reframing how data can be collected and used to better inform programmatic activities and to address health disparities facing AA and NHPI communities.
CBOs possess both an interest in and access to local knowledge that can inform health priorities. Findings have been applied to the CERT program to build capacity to support community-initiated/driven research to address health disparities affecting AAs and NHPIs.
Community health partnerships; community-based participatory research; health disparities; Asian Americans; Native Hawaiians; Pacific Islanders; research capacity building
In the US, Hispanic women have a higher incidence of, and mortality from, cervical cancer than non-Hispanic white women. The reason for this disparity may be attributable to both low rates of screening and poor adherence to recommended diagnostic follow-up after an abnormal Pap test. The 'Cervical Cancer Screening and Adherence to Follow-up Among Hispanic Women' study is a collaboration between a research institution and community partners made up of members from community based organizations, the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic and the Breast, Cervical, and Colon Health Program of the Yakima District . The study will assess the efficacy of two culturally-appropriate, tailored educational programs designed to increase cervical cancer screening among Hispanic women, based in the Yakima Valley, Washington, US.
A parallel randomized-controlled trial of 600 Hispanic women aged 21–64, who are non-compliant with Papanicolau (Pap) test screening guidelines. Participants will be randomized using block randomization to (1) a control arm (usual care); (2) a low-intensity information program, consisting of a Spanish-language video that educates women on the importance of cervical cancer screening; or (3) a high-intensity program consisting of the video plus a ‘promotora’ or lay-community health educator-led, home based intervention to encourage cervical cancer screening. Participants who attend cervical cancer screening, and receive a diagnosis of an abnormal Pap test will be assigned to a patient navigator who will provide support and information to promote adherence to follow-up tests, and any necessary surgery or treatment. Primary endpoint: Participants will be tracked via medical record review at community-based clinics, to identify women who have had a Pap test within 7 months of baseline assessment. Medical record reviewers will be blinded to randomization arm. Secondary endpoint: An evaluation of the patient navigator program as a method to improve adherence and reduce time to follow-up among participants who receive an abnormal Pap test result. An additional secondary endpoint is the cost-effectiveness of the two different intensity intervention programs.
This culturally sensitive intervention aims to increase compliance and adherence to cervical screening in a Hispanic population. If effective, such interventions may reduce incidence of cervical cancer.
Hispanic women; Pap test; Cervical cancer screening; Cancer disparities
Cervical cancer screening has been consistently shown to be effective in reducing the incidence rate and mortality from cervical cancer. However, cervical screening attendance rates are still far from satisfactory in many countries. Strategies, health promotion and education programs need to be developed with clear evidence of the causes and factors relating to the low attendance rate. The study aims to assess the prediction of cervical screening attendance rate by Chinese women’s knowledge about cervical cancer and cervical screening as well as their perception of health.
Patients and methods:
A survey with self-reported questionnaires was conducted on 385 Chinese women recruited from a community clinic in Hong Kong. Participants were Chinese women, Hong Kong residents, aged 18–65 years, able to read Chinese or English, and were not pregnant.
Women aged 37 years or less, with at least tertiary education, who perceived having control over their own health and had better knowledge on risk factors, were more likely to attend cervical cancer screening. Many participants had adequate general knowledge but were unable to identify correct answers on the risk factors.
Health promotion efforts need to focus on increasing women’s knowledge on risk factors and enhancing their perceived health control by providing more information on the link between screening and early detection with lower incidence rates and mortality from cervical cancer.
cervical screening attendance; cervical cancer; health perception and knowledge; perceived health control; Chinese
Cervical cancer is largely preventable with screening using Papanicolaou (Pap) testing. We examined Pap testing among southern women, mostly of low income and educational status, to determine if rates were similar to those reported nationally and to examine which factors were related to receipt of Pap tests.
Baseline interview data from 19,046 women aged 40–79 enrolled at community health centers into the Southern Community Cohort were analyzed. The percentages of women reporting a recent Pap test (within the past 3 years) were compared according to sociodemographic, healthcare access, and health-related behavior variables. Logistic regression analyses were employed to compute odds ratios (ORs) and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (95% CI).
Overall, 88% of the women reported having received a recent Pap test. Screening rates were high among all racial/ethnic groups, but highest for African American women. Not having a Pap test was significantly associated with lower education (OR declining to 0.73, 95% CI 0.64-0.85, among those with less than a high school education), lower income (OR declining to 0.61, 95% CI 0.43-0.87, among those with annual household incomes <$15,000), and not having health insurance (OR 0.83, 95% CI 0.71-0.97). The most common reason reported by women as to why they had not a Pap test was cost (25%), followed by reporting a doctor had not recommended the test (22%).
Pap testing was most frequent among African American women. Subsets, such as women with less education, low income, and no health insurance, however, may not be adequately screened for cervical cancer.
Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) groups have low rates of breast and cervical cancer screening. This study examined knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs (KABs) regarding breast and cervical cancer on AAPI women. A cross-sectional survey of 1,808 AAPI women was included. Descriptive statistics and chi-square tests were provided and 55.3%, 68.6%, and 71.9% had received mammograms, clinical breast exam, and Pap smears, respectively. KABs on breast and cervical cancer varied between the four ethnic groups. Understanding the KABs toward cancer screening among AAPI women holds promise for identifying barriers to early detection and could aid in the creation of interventions.
Knowledge; Attitudes; Beliefs; Breast and cervical cancer
Breast and cervical cancer continue to represent major health challenges for African American women. among Caucasian women. The underlying reasons for this disparity are multifactorial and include lack of education and awareness of screening and early detection. Traditional educational methods have enjoyed varied success in the African American community and spawned development of novel educational approaches. Community based education programs employing a variety of educational models have been introduced. Successful programs must train and provide lay community members with the tools necessary to deliver strong educational programs.
The Witness Project is a theory-based, breast and cervical cancer educational program, delivered by African American women, that stresses the importance of early detection and screening to improve survival and teaches women how to perform breast self examination. Implementing this program in the Buffalo Witness Project of Buffalo required several modifications in the curriculum, integration of non-traditional learning tools and focused training in clinical study participation. The educational approaches utilized included repetition, modeling, building comprehension, reinforcement, hands on learning, a social story on breast health for African American women, and role play conversations about breast and cervical health and support.
Incorporating non-traditional educational approaches into the Witness Project training resulted in a 79% improvement in the number of women who mastered the didactic information. A seventy-two percent study participation rate was achieved by educating the community organizations that hosted Witness Project programs about the informed consent process and study participation.
Incorporating non-traditional educational approaches into community outreach programs increases training success as well as community participation.
U.S. Hispanic women suffer a disproportionate burden of cervical cancer, with incidence and mortality rates almost twice that of whites. Community health workers, or promotoras, are considered a potential strategy for eliminating such racial and ethnic health disparities. The current study is a randomized trial of a promotora-led educational intervention focused on cervical cancer in a local Hispanic community.
Four promotoras led a series of two workshops with community members covering content related to cervical cancer. Sociodemographic characteristics, cervical cancer risk, previous screening history, cervical cancer knowledge, and self-efficacy were measured by a pre-intervention questionnaire. The post-intervention questionnaire measured the following outcomes: cervical cancer knowledge (on a 0–6 scale), self-efficacy (on a 0–5 scale), and receipt of Pap smear screening during the previous 6 months (dichotomous). Univariate analyses were performed using chi square, t-test, and the Mann–Whitney test. Multivariate logistic regression was used to model the association between explanatory variables and receipt of Pap smear screening.
There were no statistically significant differences between the two experimental groups at baseline. Follow-up data revealed significant improvements in all outcome measures: Pap smear screening (65% vs. 36%, p-value 0.02), cervical cancer knowledge (5.4 vs. 3.5, p-value < 0.001), and self-efficacy (4.7 vs. 4.0, p-value 0.002). In multivariate analysis, cervical cancer knowledge (OR 1.68, 95% CI 1.10-2.81) and intervention group assignment (OR 6.74, 95% CI 1.77-25.66) were associated with receiving a Pap smear during the follow-up period.
Our randomized trial of a promotora-led educational intervention demonstrated improved Pap screening rates, in addition to increased knowledge about cervical cancer and self-efficacy. The observed association between cervical cancer knowledge and Pap smear receipt underscores the importance of educating vulnerable populations about the diseases that disproportionately affect them. Future research should evaluate such programs on a larger scale, and identify novel targets for intervention.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-010-1434-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
cervical cancer; health disparities; community health worker; promotora
Southeast Asian women have low levels of Papanicolaou (Pap) testing participation. We conducted a group-randomized controlled trial to evaluate a cervical cancer screening intervention program targeting Seattle’s Cambodian refugee community.
Women who completed a baseline, community-based survey were eligible for the trial. Neighborhoods were the unit of randomization. Three hundred and seventy survey participants living in 17 neighborhoods were randomized to intervention or control status. Intervention group women received home visits by outreach workers and were invited to group meetings in neighborhood settings. The primary outcome measure was self-reported Pap testing in the year prior to completing a follow-up survey.
The proportion of women in the intervention group reporting recent cervical cancer screening increased from 44% at baseline to 61% at follow-up (+17%). The corresponding proportions among the control group were 51 and 62% (+11%). These temporal increases were statistically significant in both the intervention (P < 0.001) and control (P = 0.027) groups.
This study was unable to document an increase in Pap testing use specifically in the neighborhood-based outreach intervention group; rather, we found an increase in both intervention and control groups. A general awareness of the project among women and their health care providers as well as other ongoing cervical cancer screening promotional efforts may all have contributed to increases in Pap testing rates.
Cambodian Americans; Pap testing; Outreach
To conduct a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the cost effectiveness of a lay health worker-administered cervical cancer screening intervention for Vietnamese-American women.
The study group included 234 Vietnamese women in the Seattle, Washington area who had not received a Pap test in the last three years. Experimental group participants received a lay health worker home visit. The travel distance and time spent at each visit were recorded. Our trial end-point was Pap smear receipt within six months of randomization. Pap testing completion was ascertained through medical record reviews.
For all Vietnamese women, regardless of their prior history of screening, the cost per intervention was $104.0 (95% CI: $89.6–$118.4). The change in quality-adjusted life days per intervention was 1.26 (95% CI: −5.43–7.96), resulting in an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of $30,015 per quality-adjusted life year. The probability that the ICER exceeds $100,000 is 9.1%.
The degree of cost effectiveness of such interventions is sensitive to the assumed duration of behavioral change and the participants’ prior history of screening.
Cervical cancer; screening; cost effectiveness; lay health worker
Cervical cancer occurs more frequently among Vietnamese Americans than women of any other race/ethnicity. In addition, previous studies in California have documented low Papanicolaou (Pap) testing rates in Vietnamese communities. This study focused on health care system factors and physician characteristics associated with recent cervical cancer screening among Vietnamese women. A population-based survey was conducted in Seattle during 2002. In-person interviews were conducted by bilingual, bicultural female survey workers. The survey response rate was 82% and 518 women were included in the analysis. Seventy-four percent of the respondents reported having been screened for cervical cancer on at least one occasion, and 64% reported a Pap smear within the previous 2 years. Women with a regular doctor were more likely to have been recently screened than those without a regular doctor (OR = 2.33, 95% CI = 1.45–3.74). Among those with a regular doctor, having a male physician, receiving care at a private doctor’s office (rather than a community, hospital, or multi-specialty clinic), and concern about the cost of health care were independently associated with lower screening rates. Physician ethnicity was not associated with recent Pap smear receipt. The findings support targeted interventions for Vietnamese women without a regular physician and private doctors’ offices that serve Vietnamese Americans. The availability of low cost screening services should be publicized in Vietnamese communities.
cervical cancer; immigrants; Pap testing; Vietnamese