Online Program

Speaker characteristics influencing mammography screening commitment at friend-to-friend educational events

Monday, November 4, 2013 : 9:15 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.

Richard Wood, MHA, School of Rural Public Health, Texas A&M Health Science Center, College Station, TX
Marcia Ory, PhD, MPH, Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences, Texas A&M HSC School of Rural Public Health, College Station, TX
Background: Health presentations often call for physicians or nurses to serve as credible speakers, but professionals may be scarce in rural areas. Both expertise and trustworthiness are important dimensions of speaker credibility. Little is known about how these dimensions impact behavioral intentions at community-based mammography education events in rural areas. Methods: This study includes data on speaker characteristics from 43 evidence-based Friend-to-Friend community events on mammography commitment in Texas during 2011. Demographic and outcome data from 1516 women attendees was also collected. After the events, women could commit to obtain a mammography within six months. Difference in commitment based on speaker expertise or trustworthiness was the primary outcome of interest. Speaker variables were: 1) expertise defined as being a physician, nurse, other healthcare provider, or lay person; and 2) trustworthiness defined as being a cancer survivor. Covariates included participant race, ethnicity, age, personal or family history of cancer, and whether a speaker spoke about all six topics prescribed by the evidence-based program. Results: Physicians spoke at 47% of events, nurses 19%, and other professionals 28%. Forty-percent of speakers were also cancer survivors. Among speaker variables, only the speakers possessing the trustworthiness characteristic (cancer survivor) significantly influenced women's commitment to mammography (p<.05). Family history of cancer (p <.005) and age (p <.005) were significant audience characteristics. Conclusion: Community education events may benefit from including credible speakers who possess aspects of trustworthiness. Educational presentations on mammography screening given by cancer survivors may influence audience's intended behavior independent of speaker's professional expertise.

Learning Areas:

Communication and informatics
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Discuss how speaker characteristics influence behavioral intentions toward mammography screening at community events

Keyword(s): Cancer Screening, Communication

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Am expert in cancer prevention and control and part of CDC network Research interests: chronic disease management with attention to strategies for improving the translation of diabetes prevention and treatment guidelines, and examining the implementation and dissemination of best strategies for enhancing the quality of life for cancer survivors. Author of over 200 publications on a variety of topics including cancer prevention and control, minority health and aging, and translational research.
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.