229471 Fear as a barrier to mammography

Wednesday, November 10, 2010 : 11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

Jennifer Hatcher, RN, PhD , College of Nursing, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
Mary Kay Rayens, PhD , College of Nursing and College of Public Health, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
Nancy Schoenberg, PhD , Dept. of Behavioral Sciences,University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
Background: Screening mammography is the single most effective method of early detection of breast cancer however mammography rates in America remain suboptimal among certain groups of women. These vulnerable women may experience both structural and psychosocial barriers to mammography screening. The purpose of this study is to identify predictors of fear as a barrier to mammography in women who use the Emergency Department for non urgent care. Methods: A convenience sample of 90 women who presented to the ED of a public University hospital was surveyed to determine their mammography status, demographic characteristics and barriers to mammography. This report focuses on the most commonly identified barrier, fear, and the characteristics that predict this barrier. Participants were English speaking women over the age of 40 visiting the ED for a non urgent complaint or with a person with a non urgent complaint. Results: The average age of the 90 women surveyed was 54.8 years (SD=9.6). The majority of women were white (55%), not married (56%), with an income of less than $30,000; slightly less than half of them had not had a mammogram in the past year (44%). One-third of women indicated fear of the procedure itself and/or fear of the results as barriers to mammography receipt. Predictors of fear as a barrier were age and income. Younger women and women with lower incomes were more likely to choose fear as a barrier to mammography. Women who had not had a mammogram in the past year were no more likely than women who had to be afraid. Fear status was also not predicted by race/ethnicity, marital status, having insurance, or having access to a primary care provider. Conclusion: Women who visit the ED for non urgent complaints are a vulnerable population. Future interventions for this group should focus not only on obvious concrete barriers to mammography but should explore psychosocial barriers such as fear. Public health practitioners should be aware of which women are most likely to experience this barrier and tailor interventions accordingly.

Learning Areas:
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related nursing
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the demographic predictors of fear as a barrier to mammography. 2. Discuss the obstacles to mammography faced by women who visit the ED for non urgent care. 3. Describe the demographic characteristics of women who visit the ED for non urgent care.

Keywords: Access to Health Care, Barriers to Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am the PI on this project and wrote the abstract.
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.