247876 Exploring the Power of Narrative and its Role in Helping to Create Healthy Communities Free from Cervical Cancer

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 4:50 PM

Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, PhD, MPH , Department of Preventive Medicine, Institute for Health Promotion & Disease Prevention Research, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Sheila Murphy, PhD , Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Meghan Bridgid Moran, PhD , School of Communication, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Flor Del Hoyo, MPH , Department of Preventive Medicine, Institute for Health Promotion & Disease Prevention Research, University of Southern California, Alhambra, CA
Paula Amezola, MPH , Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Marina del Rey, CA
Background: With early detection and the advent of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine, cervical cancer is both a curable and preventable disease. Yet in 2010, cervical cancer took 4,210 lives in the United States. The current research examines whether narratives or stories may be a better way to deliver vital health information than more traditional non-narrative formats. Purpose: Investigate the relative impact of health messages provided in a narrative or non-narrative format on women's knowledge, attitudes, and prevention behaviors concerning the use of the HPV vaccine and Pap test. Methods: A transdisciplinary team at the University of Southern California conducted eight focus groups with English-speaking Hispanic, African American, Korean American, and Caucasian women. Participant responses were video-taped, transcribed and content analysis was conducted to gauge acceptance and identify themes between the narrative (N=4) and non-narrative (N=4) focus groups. Results: Across all groups women reported learning additional information about the prevalence, transmission and prevention of the HPV virus After watching both films attitudes towards the Pap test remained mix. In general, participants responded more positively to the narrative film and expressed a need to learn more about how to keep themselves and their daughters healthy. Discussion: While the narrative appeared to transcend certain cultural boundaries further research is needed to determine whether a failure to identify with fictional characters (such as seen in the Korean focus group) limits the ability of narratives to change relevant knowledge, attitudes and behavior.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Communication and informatics
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Identify the evidence in support of educational health material presented through narrativd Compare results of focus groups conducted among multiple ethnic audiences Identify women’s perceived barriers to cervical cancer screening and HPV vaccination

Keywords: Cervical Cancer, Women's Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a Principle Investigator on this project at the University of Southern California through an NIH grant.
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.