204931 Knowledge and Perceptions of HPV Vaccine Acceptance among African American College Women

Monday, November 9, 2009: 10:45 AM

Lauren Raquel Darensbourg, MPH , Office of Public Health and Science, Office of Minority Health, Rockville, MD
Ivette A. López, PhD, MPH , Institute of Public Health, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, FL
Fei Tan, PhD , Institute of Public Health, Florida A & M University, Tallahassee, FL
Tonetta Y. Scott, MPH , Institute of Public Health, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, FL
Background: Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most prevalent sexually transmitted infection (STI) in the US, with prevalence rates of approximately 50% in sexually active young women. Yet, surveys among college students indicate a paucity of HPV knowledge, perceptions and acceptance of the HPV vaccine. The purpose of this study was to assess African-American college women's knowledge and perceptions of HPV (independent variables), and their association with the acceptance of HPV vaccination (dependent variable).

Methods: Written surveys were administered to 122 African-American females between the ages of 18 and 26 who were undergraduates at Florida A & M University, a premier historically Black university. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to determine associations.

Results: Statistically significant correlations were found between planning to get vaccinated against HPV and the degree of support for HPV vaccination of the family and influential women in the young women's lives (subjective norms and normative beliefs). Further, perceived self-capacity or efficacy to get vaccinated against HPV (perceived behavioral control) was strongly associated with the likelihood to get vaccinated against HPV. Finally, perceiving the HPV vaccine as valuable was statistically significantly correlated with the likelihood of getting vaccinated against HPV.

Conclusions: Health education efforts (interventions and educational materials) that are culturally competent for African American women in college should be increased, given the high percentage of misconceptions about HPV among the study population. This study underscores the need for continuous and consistent health education interventions directed at African American women of college age.

Learning Objectives:
To define what is HPV and the vaccine that has been developed to prevent it. To identify the components of the Health Belief Model and the Theory of Planned Behavior that guided the variable selection of the study. To evaluate the influence of social networks in making the decision of getting the HPV vaccine among African American college-aged women.

Keywords: STD Prevention, African American

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I did this study under my advisor, Dr. Ivette Lopez. I collected and analyzed the data under her guidance, and it was my thesis project for my MPH.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.