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1.  Providers’ Perceptions and Practices Regarding BRCA1/2 Genetic Counseling and Testing in African American Women 
Journal of Genetic Counseling  2011;20(6):674-689.
We examined healthcare providers’ perceptions of genetic counseling and testing in African American women (AAW) at moderate to high-risk of carrying a BRCA1/2 mutation. We conducted 20 in-depth interviews with genetic counselors (n=5), medical oncologists (n=8), obstetrician/gynecologists (n=2) and surgeons (n=5). Interviews were audiotaped, transcribed and independently coded by two coders using a content analysis approach. Seven themes emerged relevant to providers’ perceptions of AAW’s use of BRCA1/2 genetic services: access factors, cultural beliefs and preferences, effects of testing, patient motivators for genetic counseling and testing, patient-provider communication, reasons for provider referral, and reasons for patient refusal. Providers identified individual- and system-level barriers to AAW’s use of genetic services, including lack of follow-up after referrals to genetic specialists and challenges to obtaining financial coverage for under- and uninsured high-risk women. Results have implications for physician and patient education regarding appropriate referrals to and uptake of genetic services in at-risk AAW.
PMCID: PMC3286616  PMID: 21822773
African American women; BRCA1/2; breast cancer genetics; genetic counseling; genetic testing; cancer providers
2.  Development of Decision Support Intervention for Black Women with Breast Cancer 
Psycho-oncology  2010;19(1):62-70.
Adjuvant therapy improves breast cancer survival but is underutilized by Black women. Few interventions have addressed this problem. This preliminary report describes the process we used to develop a decision support intervention for Black women eligible for adjuvant therapy. Aims were to use qualitative methods to describe factors that influence Black women’s adjuvant therapy decisions, use these formative data to develop messages for a treatment decision-support intervention, and pilot test the acceptability and utility of the intervention with community members and newly diagnosed women. Thirty-four in-depth interviews were conducted with breast cancer patients in active treatment, survivors and cancer providers to gather qualitative data. Participant ages ranged from 38 to 69 years. A cultural framework was used to analyze the data and to inform intervention messages. Most women relied on their providers for treatment recommendations. Several women reported problems communicating with providers and felt unprepared to ask questions and discuss adjuvant treatment options. Other factors related to treatment experiences were: spiritual coping, collectivism, and sharing breast cancer experiences with other Black survivors. Using these formative data, we developed an intervention that is survivor-based and includes an in-person session which incorporates sharing personal stories, communication skills training and decision support. Intervention materials were reviewed by community members, researchers/clinicians and patients newly diagnosed with breast cancer. Patients reported satisfaction with the intervention and felt better prepared to talk with providers. The intervention will be tested in a randomized trial to enhance decision support and increase use of indicated adjuvant treatment.
PMCID: PMC3136087  PMID: 19267384
African-American; breast cancer; treatment decisions; communication; oncology
3.  Are Health-care Relationships Important for Mammography Adherence in Latinas? 
Journal of General Internal Medicine  2008;23(12):2024-2030.
Latinas are the fastest growing racial ethnic group in the United States and have an incidence of breast cancer that is rising three times faster than that of non-Latino white women, yet their mammography use is lower than that of non-Latino women.
We explored factors that predict satisfaction with health-care relationships and examined the effect of satisfaction with health-care relationships on mammography adherence in Latinas.
Design and Setting
We conducted a cross-sectional survey of 166 Latinas who were ≥40 years old. Women were recruited from Latino-serving clinics and a Latino health radio program.
Mammography adherence was based on self-reported receipt of a mammogram within the past 2 years. The main independent variable was overall satisfaction with one’s health-care relationship. Other variables included: self report of patient-provider communication, level of trust in providers, primary language, country of origin, discrimination experiences, and perceptions of racism.
Forty-three percent of women reported very high satisfaction in their health-care relationships. Women with high trust in providers and those who did not experience discrimination were more satisfied with their health-care relationships compared to women with lower trust and who experienced discrimination (p < .01). Satisfaction with the health-care relationship was, in turn, significantly associated with mammography adherence (OR: 3.34, 95% CI: 1.47–7.58), controlling for other factors.
Understanding the factors that impact Latinas’ mammography adherence may inform intervention strategies. Efforts to improve Latina’s satisfaction with physicians by building trust may lead to increased use of necessary mammography.
PMCID: PMC2596511  PMID: 18839258
Latinas; immigrants; mammograms; satisfaction; adherence

Results 1-3 (3)