Effective lay health worker outreach and media-based education for promoting cervical cancer screening among Vietnamese American women

Am J Public Health. 2007 Sep;97(9):1693-700. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2006.086470. Epub 2007 Feb 28.


Objectives: We sought to promote cervical cancer screening among Vietnamese American women in Santa Clara County, Calif.

Methods: In 2001-2004, we recruited and randomized 1005 Vietnamese American women into 2 groups: lay health worker outreach plus media-based education (combined intervention) or media-based education only. Lay health workers met with the combined intervention group twice over 3 to 4 months to promote Papanicolaou (Pap) testing. We used questionnaires to measure changes in awareness, knowledge, and Pap testing.

Results: Testing increased among women in both the combined intervention (65.8% to 81.8%; P<.001) and media-only (70.1% to 75.5%; P<.001) groups, but significantly more in the combined intervention group (P=.001). Among women never previously screened, significantly more women in the combined intervention group (46.0%) than in the media-only group (27.1%) obtained tests (P<.001). Significantly more women in the combined intervention group obtained their first Pap test or obtained one after an interval of more than 1 year (became up-to-date; 45.7% to 67.3%, respectively; P<.001) than did those in the media-only group (50.9% to 55.7%, respectively; P=.035).

Conclusions: Combined intervention motivated more Vietnamese American women to obtain their first Pap tests and to become up-to-date than did media education alone.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Asian Americans / education*
  • California
  • Community Health Workers*
  • Community-Institutional Relations
  • Female
  • Health Education / methods*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Mass Media*
  • Mass Screening / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Papanicolaou Test*
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / ethnology*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / ethnology*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Vaginal Smears / statistics & numerical data*
  • Vietnam / ethnology
  • Women's Health / ethnology*