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Effects of a Culturally Sensitive Education Program on the Breast Cancer Knowledge and Beliefs of Hispanic Women

Cathy P. Hall
John D. Hall
Judith T. Pfriemer
Paige D. Wimberley
Craig H. Jones
ONF 2007, 34(6), 1195-1202 DOI: 10.1188/07.ONF.1195-1202

Purpose/Objectives: To determine the effectiveness of a multifaceted, culturally sensitive, and linguistically appropriate breast cancer education program for Hispanic women.

Design: Experimental (post-test only, control-group design).

Setting: The parish hall of a Roman Catholic Church in northeastern Arkansas.

Sample: 31 Hispanic women aged 25-56 residing in northeastern Arkansas.

Methods: The experimental group received a multifaceted, culturally sensitive, and linguistically appropriate breast cancer education program; the control group received general nutritional information. Both groups completed the Breast Cancer Knowledge Test and Breast Cancer Screening Belief Scales so that the researchers could measure dependent variables. Data were analyzed with t tests.

Main Research Variables: Knowledge of and beliefs about breast cancer.

Findings: The experimental group scored significantly higher on the Breast Cancer Knowledge Test than did the control group. The control group scored significantly higher than the experimental group on the barriers to mammography scale and the benefits of breast self-examination scale of the Breast Cancer Screening Belief Scales.

Conclusions: The multifaceted, culturally sensitive, and linguistically appropriate breast cancer education program appeared to be responsible for increased knowledge of breast cancer and reduced barriers to mammography.

Implications for Nursing: Education may change Hispanic women's knowledge and beliefs about breast cancer. An intervention designed and implemented by nurses can play a significant role in meeting the strong need for culturally sensitive and linguistically appropriate breast cancer educational programs for Hispanic women. Such programs should focus on helping Hispanic women understand their personal risks related to breast cancer and reduce barriers they perceive to early screening and detection.

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