Background: The incidence of cervical cancer (CC) has been rising in sub-Saharan Africa, and health authorities in this region have responded by increasing the availability of cheap or no-cost CC screening services (CCSS), public health education, and others. However, the efforts have not yet resulted into the expected uptake of CCSS.
Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the determinants of uptake of CCSS at a no-cost reproductive health clinic managed by nurse-midwives.
Methods: A descriptive design and a structured interview questionnaire were used to collect data from 236 women attending the reproductive health clinic. Logistic regression statistics were used to examine the determinants of uptake of CCSS.
Results: The mean age of participants was 28.7 years, and only 29% had received CC screening. The significant determinants of uptake of CCSS were concern about the gender of the healthcare professional (HCP) (odds ratio [OR], 5.03; P = .001), age older than 25 years (OR, 3.09; P = .005), contraceptive use (OR, 0.28; P = .02), encouragement by HCPs (OR, 0.16; P = .00), and perceived quality of CCSS (OR, 0.08; P = .00).
Conclusions: Gender of the HCP and encouragement or reminders by the HCP influence uptake of CCSS. Because nurse-midwives have successfully led strategies to promote other integrated reproductive health services, they can also play a key role in enhancing uptake of CCSS in resource-poor settings.
Implications for Practice: Interventions to enhance service quality and deliberate policies requiring HCP to recommend encourage and remind clients may help to enhance uptake of CCSS in resource-poor settings.
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