A comprehensive cross-sectional survey to identify barriers and facilitators of cervical cancer screening in women with HIV in Guangxi, China

Ran Zhao, Shujia Liang, Deanna Teoh, Yunqing Fei, Xianwu Pang, Shalini Kulasingam

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Abstract

Background: Co-infection with HIV is a strong risk factor for cervical cancer development. It is unknown whether women with HIV in Guangxi, China are utilizing currently available cervical cancer screening services, what barriers they face, and if they are aware of their increased risk of developing cervical cancer. Methods: Using a cross-sectional design, we administered a survey to women with HIV aged 21–65 years from August to October 2019 in Guangxi, China. A 100-item survey was designed in English and translated into Chinese. We assessed knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about cervical cancer and cervical cancer screening, identified potential barriers and facilitators of cervical cancer screening programs for women with HIV, and assessed potential risk factors for cervical cancer. Results: A total of 101 participants completed the survey. The median age of participants was 38 years (IQR 34.5–44 years). Forty-seven percent of the women had been screened for cervical cancer at least once. The mean score was 5.6 out of 9 (95% CI 5.3–6.0) on the knowledge about cervical cancer and screening and 6.3 out of 10 (95% CI 5.9–6.6) for cervical cancer risk factors, respectively. Facilitators of participating in cervical cancer screening included trust and openness to healthcare workers having conversations about female health concerns. Barriers identified in our study included knowledge gaps in cervical cancer risk awareness and cervical cancer screening awareness, including the lack of knowledge of available cervical cancer screening services. Women with HIV in Guangxi are under-screened for cervical cancer. Conclusion: When designing tailored cervical cancer screening programs for women with HIV in Guangxi, educational programs to address existing knowledge gaps will be needed to increase screening uptake in this high-risk population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number12
JournalInfectious Agents and Cancer
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The study was funded by University of Minnesota Center for Global Health and Social Responsibility Global Health Seed Grant and School of Public Health Hawley Student Research Awards.

Funding Information:
We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Mr. Eric Chu for coordinating the University of Minnesota team with the Guangxi CDC team when implementing the project. We would like to thank the staff at the Guangxi CDC HIV clinic for recruiting the study participants. This study assessed knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about cervical cancer screening among Chinese women with HIV. Our results show that women with HIV in Guangxi are under-screened for cervical cancer, and we identified knowledge gaps in cervical cancer risk awareness and screening awareness. The results from this study may provide insights on issues that need to be addressed to implement effective cervical cancer screening programs among women with HIV in China.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s).

Keywords

  • Cervical cancer screening
  • Women with HIV
  • “Knowledge attitudes and beliefs”

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