An Open Access article published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review Journal.


Ann O. Amuta-Jimenez, PhD
Itunu O. Sokale, MD, DrPH
Lorraine R. Reitzel, PhD


Cervical cancer screening can prevent women across all age groups from developing cervical cancer (CC). However, Sub-Saharan African immigrant women (SAIW) sparsely engage in routine CC screening. Thus, developing prevention strategies to improve SAIW’s adherence to recommended CC screening guidelines is critical. To ensure that such strategies are successful, they must meet the needs of the target population. By conducting qualitative interviews with SAIW (N = 15), we aimed to get a deeper understanding of barriers to CC screening receipt.


We asked SAIW about barriers to CC screening and possible ideas to facilitate their future screening behavior.


Our findings revealed that SAIW are especially affected by several major barriers: lack of awareness of CC guidelines, fear/fatalism, lack of resources (eg, a lack of time due to job and family commitment), other resource-related barriers (eg, unreliable mode of transport, and no health insurance), modesty, and overt bias. Participants indicated a preference for female healthcare providers for CC screening and suggested spousal involvement in CC intervention development to foster support.


The identification of multi-level barriers indicates that multiple strategies are needed to improve the uptake of CC screening among SAIW.

Source: Health Behavior and Policy Review, Volume 10, Number 5, October 2023, pp. 1-8(8)
Publisher: Paris Scholar Publishing Ltd.
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