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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 63-69

Knowledge and attitude towards, and the utilisation of cervical and breast cancer screening services by female healthcare professionals at a tertiary care hospital of Eastern India: A cross-sectional study

Department of Community Medicine and Family Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Swayam Pragyan Parida
Department of Community and Family Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, 3rd Floor, Academic Block, Bhubaneswar, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/npmj.npmj_760_21

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Background: Breast and cervical cancers are the two leading causes of cancer-specific mortality and morbidity amongst Indian women. Screening methods are cost-effective. However, the uptake of screening methods in India is very low. Knowledge and attitude of healthcare professionals (HCPs) play an important role in reducing the mortality related to cancer. Materials and Methods: This study aimed to assess the knowledge and utilisation of screening methods for cervical and breast cancer and to elaborate barriers for non-utilisation amongst female HCPs, both doctors and nurses. A cross-sectional study was carried out from April to July 2017 in a tertiary healthcare hospital of eastern India amongst 200 female HCPs using a pre-designed, pre-tested, self-administered questionnaire. Data were analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences version 20.0. Statistical tests such as proportion and mean were calculated and the Chi-square test was used as a test of significance for categorical variables. Results: Clinical breast examination and mammography were practiced by only 26.5% and 7% of respondents, respectively. Only seven doctors and one nurse had ever undergone Pap smear. More than 90% of respondents knew risk factors, signs and symptoms and the availability of screening tools for the detection of cervical and breast carcinoma. Conclusions: The utilisation of breast and cervical cancer screening was unsatisfactory despite having good knowledge of the preventable cancers and screening methods amongst HCPs. There is a need for attitudinal change amongst HCPs by continuous sensitisation programmes.

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