Mammograms and healthcare access among US Hispanic and non-Hispanic women 40 years and older

Fam Community Health. Apr-Jun 2006;29(2):80-8. doi: 10.1097/00003727-200604000-00004.


Compared to non-Hispanic women, Hispanic women have disproportional mortality rates due to breast cancer. Mammographic screening detects breast cancer in its early stages and reduces mortality. We examined data obtained from the 2002 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System questionnare using logistic regression analyses to study the relationships between demographic and healthcare factors and mammography use among Hispanic and non-Hispanic White women 40 years and older. Overall, the odds of ever having had a mammogram were similar among Hispanic and non-Hispanic White women (odds ratio = 1.2; 95% confidence interval = 0.9, 1.6), when adjusted for age, employment status, and other demographic variables. Having a personal physician and the type of healthcare facility typically used were associated with mammography use, regardless of Hispanic ethnicity. Although associations between mammography use and demographic factors were similar between ethnic groups, larger proportions of Hispanics had demographic characteristics that were negatively associated with mammography use. Establishing policies and mechanisms to provide all women with regular access to a personal physician or healthcare professional for their preventive and nonemergency healthcare needs may improve mammography use among both Hispanic and non-Hispanic White women. Similarly, reaching out to women who are uninsured and who use facilities other than physicians' offices for their healthcare needs may increase the use of mammography among both ethnic groups.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Breast Neoplasms / ethnology*
  • Female
  • Health Facility Administration
  • Health Services Accessibility*
  • Hispanic or Latino*
  • Humans
  • Mammography / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Socioeconomic Factors