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Breast and Colorectal Cancer Screening Barriers Among Immigrants and Refugees: A Mixed-Methods Study at Three Community Health Centres in Toronto, Canada

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Year: 
2019
Source Info: 
21: 473-482
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Abstract

Mammography and fecal occult blood testing (FOBT) improve the detection, management, and prognosis of breast and colorectal cancer, respectively, but are underperformed in the recent immigrant and refugee population. We aimed to identify barriers to screening and potential solutions in this population. A mixed-methods study involving a retrospective chart review and focus group interviews was conducted, with data analyzed using univariate logistic regression and thematic analysis, respectively. Mammography completion was associated with greater time in Canada (p=0.01) and region of origin (p=0.04), while FOBT completion was associated with region of origin (p=0.03). Barriers included time constraints, language and cultural differences, and poor interprofessional communication. This study of recent immigrants and refugees identifies barriers to screening and supports potential solutions including culturally-congruent peer workers, targeted screening workshops, and visual screening aids. Further work is needed to address the unique healthcare needs of this diverse and growing population.