246140 Lost in translation: Research challenges and lessons learned from a qualitative study of factors that may influence breast and cervical cancer screening in the Hmong community

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sheryl Thorburn, PhD, MPH , School of Social and Behavioral Health Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR
Jennifer Kue, PhD Candidate , Department of Public Health, Oregon State University, Portland, OR
Karen Keon, MPH , Department of Public Health, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR
Background: Hmong women in the U.S. are screened for breast and cervical cancer (BCC) at remarkably low rates, yet little research has been conducted with this population. Working with the Hmong community presents unique challenges and opportunities. This presentation shares lessons learned during the process of planning and conducting qualitative research on social, cultural, and health care system factors that may influence BCC screening among Hmong women in Oregon. These lessons have the potential to provide guidance to researchers on methodological and practical issues related to conducting research with this population. Methods: We conducted 17 key informant and 84 in-depth interviews with Hmong women and men. Research team discussions, insights from our Hmong research team members, input from our Community Advisory Committee, and project documents were sources of information about the process of conducting research in this community. Results: In this presentation, we describe what we did, what the challenges were, and what lessons can be learned from our experience. The lessons learned pertain to building community partnerships and support; establishing and working with a community advisory committee; hiring and training bi-lingual, bi-cultural staff; using culturally appropriate materials and methods; obtaining informed consent; addressing language and literacy issues; obtaining accurate translations and transcriptions; and protecting privacy and maintaining confidentiality in a small, clan-based community. Conclusion: We used multiple strategies to ensure that this study was culturally appropriate. The lessons learned from our experiences can inform future research with Hmong communities.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Diversity and culture
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
By the end of the session, the participant will be able to: (1) describe the major research challenges faced in conducting qualitative research with the Hmong community in Oregon; (2) describe the lessons learned from conducting qualitative research with the Hmong community in Oregon; and (3) identify methodological and practical issues to consider when designing and conducting research with Hmong communities.

Keywords: Asian and Pacific Islander, Community Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am the Principal Investigator on the research grant generating the presentation and have directed and participated in all phases of the study.
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.