Friday, 21 July 2006
This presentation is part of : Adult Women and Cancer Issues
Perceived Barriers about Pap Smear Testing in Working Women in Thailand
Chayanin Boonpongmanee, PhD, RN, Intercollegiate College of Nursing (Tri-Cities Campus), Washington State University, Richland, WA, USA and Piyanuch Jittanoon, PhD, RN, Public Health Nursing Department, Faculty of Nursing Prince of Songkla University, Hatyai Songkhla, Thailand.
Learning Objective #1: understand how perceived barriers predict the use of Pap smear testing by working women in Thailand.
Learning Objective #2: understand the relationships between socioeconomic factors and Pap smear testing in working women in Thailand.

Invasive cervical cancer is highly preventable but it continues to be the leading cause of death among Thai women. Early detection of cervical cancer dramatically increases the potential for cure. However, a significant number of Thai women have never received cervical cancer screening at all, and some may have their first Pap smear test when they have a postpartum check-up. The Health Belief Model was used to guide the study. The first aim of the study was to examine how perceived susceptibility, benefits, and barriers predict the use of Papanicolaou (Pap) smear testing by working women in Thailand. Aim two examined the relationships between socioeconomic factors and Pap smear testing in the same sample of women. A self-administered questionnaire, the Susceptibility, Benefits, and Barriers Scale (SBB), was mailed to 300 women who worked in four large settings in a metropolitan area. The response rate to the survey was 63% (N = 189). Forty-eight percent of the women reported that they have never received cervical screening. Logistic regression analysis showed that perceived barriers predict adherence to Pap smear screening (p < .001). Women who reported barriers were significantly less likely to obtain a Pap smear (odds ratio (OR) = .88, p < .001). Time constraints (57%), embarrassment (48%), fear (40%), knowledge deficits (20%) and cost (19%) were consecutively reported as significant barriers to engaging in Pap smear testing. Marital status, age, education, family income were significant factors related to Pap smear testing. Findings suggest that understanding of perceived barriers and demographic factors that influence Pap smear testing in Thai working women is crucial for health care profession to design targeted cervical cancer screening programs. Policy makers need to consider effective screening strategies which take psychosocial, educational, social and cultural factors into consideration to increase adherence to cervical cancer screening.

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