Online Program

Partnering with community health promoters associated with coffee cooperatives to address barriers to effective cervical cancer prevention in rural communities

Monday, November 4, 2013

Rebecca Singer, RN, ND, Grounds for Health, Waterbury, VT
Kayla Moore, MPH, Country Programs, Grounds for Health, Waterbury, VT
Grounds for Health (GFH), a US-based NGO, partners with coffee cooperatives and local health authorities to improve cervical cancer prevention services, increase access, and reduce loss to follow-up. In Nicaragua and Mexico, cervical cancer ranks among the two most common causes of cancer death. Though it is preventable, women in rural regions face numerous barriers to access. GFH utilizes an innovative model that includes training local providers in screen-and-treat techniques and working with community health promoters (CHP) to address these barriers at the community level. Between 2007 and 2012, GFH collaborated with ten coffee cooperatives to mobilize communities around cervical cancer prevention. GFH and the co-ops trained 356 CHPs associated with the co-ops from 60 communities in Chiapas, Mexico and 112 communities in Jinotega, Matagalpa and Madriz, Nicaragua. During this period, 16,266 women were screened for cervical cancer using Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid. Of the screen positive women, 70% received appropriate treatment within three months. Semi-structured interviews with community members, co-op staff, and local providers highlighted the important role played by CHPs. CHPs reduced barriers to screening and treatment at the community level by raising awareness and reducing stigma, dispelling myths and fears, accompanying women to care, and coordinating with providers to ensure follow-up care.

Learning Areas:

Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning
Provision of health care to the public

Learning Objectives:
Demonstrate how partnering with coffee cooperatives to train and support community health promoters (CHP) reduces barriers to cervical cancer screening and treatment in coffee-growing communities.

Keyword(s): Cervical Cancer, Cancer Prevention

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the program manager for Grounds for Health's cervical cancer prevention programs in both Mexico and Nicaragua. I have been instrumental in the design, implementation and measurement and evaluation of our unique community participatory model.
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.