Experiences and perceptions regarding clinical breast exam screening by trained laywomen in Malawi

Racquel E. Kohler, Anna R. Miller, Lily Gutnik, Clara N. Lee, Satish Gopal

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

Abstract

Purpose: Despite the increasing burden, breast cancer control in sub-Saharan Africa is insufficient. Late diagnosis and lack of early detection and screening services contribute to high mortality. Clinical breast exam (CBE) screening can be valuable in low-income countries, including use of community health workers and non-health professionals to conduct exams. We assessed experiences of women who underwent CBE screening by trained laywomen in Lilongwe, Malawi, as part of a pilot program. Methods: The pilot study invited women attending urban health clinics to a breast cancer educational talk followed by CBE screening by trained laywomen. We purposively sampled participants from the pilot study and interviewed them about the screening experience and future cancer education programs and services. Results: Overall participants had positive experiences and were willing to undergo CBE screening by trained laywomen. Participants were motivated by the educational talk, shared newly acquired cancer knowledge with their social networks, and encouraged others to seek screening. Screened women suggested strategies for future interventions including combining breast and cervical cancer screening, using female providers, partnering with community leaders to increase uptake, and expanding services into the community. Conclusions: Asymptomatic Malawian women accepted CBE screening by trained laywomen and considered breast cancer an important health issue. Women appreciated combined education and screening services and proposed further linkage of breast and cervical cancer screening. Based on our results, training laywomen to educate the public on breast cancer and conduct CBE is a feasible breast cancer control strategy in sub-Saharan Africa.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Pages137-143
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Causes and Control
Volume28
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

Fingerprint

Malawi
Breast
Breast Neoplasms
Africa South of the Sahara
Early Detection of Cancer
Uterine Cervical Neoplasms
Education
Neoplasms
Urban Health
Delayed Diagnosis
Social Support
Mortality
Health

Keywords

  • Breast cancer screening
  • Health education
  • Lay health worker
  • Qualitative interviews
  • Sub-Saharan Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

Cite this

Experiences and perceptions regarding clinical breast exam screening by trained laywomen in Malawi. / Kohler, Racquel E.; Miller, Anna R.; Gutnik, Lily; Lee, Clara N.; Gopal, Satish.

In: Cancer Causes and Control, Vol. 28, No. 2, 01.02.2017, p. 137-143.

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

@article{78a07f70d9c045f8907d6d1a3b3b16b2,
title = "Experiences and perceptions regarding clinical breast exam screening by trained laywomen in Malawi",
abstract = "Purpose: Despite the increasing burden, breast cancer control in sub-Saharan Africa is insufficient. Late diagnosis and lack of early detection and screening services contribute to high mortality. Clinical breast exam (CBE) screening can be valuable in low-income countries, including use of community health workers and non-health professionals to conduct exams. We assessed experiences of women who underwent CBE screening by trained laywomen in Lilongwe, Malawi, as part of a pilot program. Methods: The pilot study invited women attending urban health clinics to a breast cancer educational talk followed by CBE screening by trained laywomen. We purposively sampled participants from the pilot study and interviewed them about the screening experience and future cancer education programs and services. Results: Overall participants had positive experiences and were willing to undergo CBE screening by trained laywomen. Participants were motivated by the educational talk, shared newly acquired cancer knowledge with their social networks, and encouraged others to seek screening. Screened women suggested strategies for future interventions including combining breast and cervical cancer screening, using female providers, partnering with community leaders to increase uptake, and expanding services into the community. Conclusions: Asymptomatic Malawian women accepted CBE screening by trained laywomen and considered breast cancer an important health issue. Women appreciated combined education and screening services and proposed further linkage of breast and cervical cancer screening. Based on our results, training laywomen to educate the public on breast cancer and conduct CBE is a feasible breast cancer control strategy in sub-Saharan Africa.",
keywords = "Breast cancer screening, Health education, Lay health worker, Qualitative interviews, Sub-Saharan Africa",
author = "Kohler, {Racquel E.} and Miller, {Anna R.} and Lily Gutnik and Lee, {Clara N.} and Satish Gopal",
year = "2017",
month = "2",
doi = "10.1007/s10552-016-0844-0",
volume = "28",
pages = "137--143",
journal = "Cancer Causes and Control",
issn = "0957-5243",
publisher = "Springer Netherlands",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Experiences and perceptions regarding clinical breast exam screening by trained laywomen in Malawi

AU - Kohler,Racquel E.

AU - Miller,Anna R.

AU - Gutnik,Lily

AU - Lee,Clara N.

AU - Gopal,Satish

PY - 2017/2/1

Y1 - 2017/2/1

N2 - Purpose: Despite the increasing burden, breast cancer control in sub-Saharan Africa is insufficient. Late diagnosis and lack of early detection and screening services contribute to high mortality. Clinical breast exam (CBE) screening can be valuable in low-income countries, including use of community health workers and non-health professionals to conduct exams. We assessed experiences of women who underwent CBE screening by trained laywomen in Lilongwe, Malawi, as part of a pilot program. Methods: The pilot study invited women attending urban health clinics to a breast cancer educational talk followed by CBE screening by trained laywomen. We purposively sampled participants from the pilot study and interviewed them about the screening experience and future cancer education programs and services. Results: Overall participants had positive experiences and were willing to undergo CBE screening by trained laywomen. Participants were motivated by the educational talk, shared newly acquired cancer knowledge with their social networks, and encouraged others to seek screening. Screened women suggested strategies for future interventions including combining breast and cervical cancer screening, using female providers, partnering with community leaders to increase uptake, and expanding services into the community. Conclusions: Asymptomatic Malawian women accepted CBE screening by trained laywomen and considered breast cancer an important health issue. Women appreciated combined education and screening services and proposed further linkage of breast and cervical cancer screening. Based on our results, training laywomen to educate the public on breast cancer and conduct CBE is a feasible breast cancer control strategy in sub-Saharan Africa.

AB - Purpose: Despite the increasing burden, breast cancer control in sub-Saharan Africa is insufficient. Late diagnosis and lack of early detection and screening services contribute to high mortality. Clinical breast exam (CBE) screening can be valuable in low-income countries, including use of community health workers and non-health professionals to conduct exams. We assessed experiences of women who underwent CBE screening by trained laywomen in Lilongwe, Malawi, as part of a pilot program. Methods: The pilot study invited women attending urban health clinics to a breast cancer educational talk followed by CBE screening by trained laywomen. We purposively sampled participants from the pilot study and interviewed them about the screening experience and future cancer education programs and services. Results: Overall participants had positive experiences and were willing to undergo CBE screening by trained laywomen. Participants were motivated by the educational talk, shared newly acquired cancer knowledge with their social networks, and encouraged others to seek screening. Screened women suggested strategies for future interventions including combining breast and cervical cancer screening, using female providers, partnering with community leaders to increase uptake, and expanding services into the community. Conclusions: Asymptomatic Malawian women accepted CBE screening by trained laywomen and considered breast cancer an important health issue. Women appreciated combined education and screening services and proposed further linkage of breast and cervical cancer screening. Based on our results, training laywomen to educate the public on breast cancer and conduct CBE is a feasible breast cancer control strategy in sub-Saharan Africa.

KW - Breast cancer screening

KW - Health education

KW - Lay health worker

KW - Qualitative interviews

KW - Sub-Saharan Africa

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85009775225&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85009775225&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s10552-016-0844-0

DO - 10.1007/s10552-016-0844-0

M3 - Article

VL - 28

SP - 137

EP - 143

JO - Cancer Causes and Control

T2 - Cancer Causes and Control

JF - Cancer Causes and Control

SN - 0957-5243

IS - 2

ER -