Government Housing Assistance and Cancer Screening Among Adults With Low Income

Jordan Baeker Bispo, Hyunjung Lee, Parichoy Pal Choudhury, Zinzi Bailey, Ahmedin Jemal, Farhad Islami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Access to affordable housing may support cancer control for adults with low income by alleviating financial barriers to preventive care. This study examines relationships between cancer screening and receipt of government housing assistance among adults with low income. Methods: Data are from the 2019 and 2021 National Health Interview Survey. Eligible respondents were classified as up-to-date or not with breast cancer (BC), cervical cancer (CVC) and colorectal cancer (CRC) screening guidelines. Multivariable logistic regression was used to model guideline-concordant screening by receipt of government housing assistance, overall and stratified by urban-rural status, race/ethnicity, and age. Analyses were performed in 2023. Results: Analyses for BC, CVC and CRC screening included 2,258, 3,132, and 3,233 respondents, respectively. There was no difference in CVC screening by housing assistance status, but screening for BC and CRC was higher among those who received assistance compared to those who did not (59.7% vs. 50.8%, p<0.01 for BC; 57.1% vs. 44.1%, p<0.01 for CRC). In models adjusted for sociodemographic characteristics, health status and insurance, these differences were not statistically significant for either BC or CRC screening. In stratified adjusted models, housing assistance was statistically significantly associated with increased BC screening in urban areas (aOR=1.35, 95% CI=1.00–1.82) and among Hispanic women (aOR=2.20, 95% CI=1.01–4.78) and women 45–54 years of age (aOR=2.10, 95% CI=1.17–3.75). Conclusions: Policies that address housing affordability may enhance access to BC screening for some subgroups, including women in urban areas, Hispanic women, and younger women. More research on the mechanisms that link housing assistance to BC screening is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)205-215
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican journal of preventive medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2024

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 American Journal of Preventive Medicine

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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