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Effect of Health Care Disparities on Screening

DEL CARMEN, MARCELA G. MD, MPH; AVILA-WALLACE, MARIA NP

Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology: March 2013 - Volume 56 - Issue 1 - p 65–75
doi: 10.1097/GRF.0b013e31827af75a
Screening Tests for Cervical Cancer

Significant declines in the incidence and mortality rates of cervical cancer have occurred in the United States since the introduction of the Papanicolaou (Pap) test. Unfortunately, a reduction in the burden of cervical cancer is not equal across all ethnic and racial groups; significant disparities exist. Disparities are reflected not only in mortality and incidence rates, but also in screening rates. We review barriers to screening and effective approaches towards overcoming them. As minority populations increase over the next few decades, it becomes ever more urgent to employ interventions that will reduce the burden of cervical cancer among diverse groups.

Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Vincent Obstetrics and Gynecology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts

The authors declare that they have nothing to disclose.

Correspondence: Marcela G. del Carmen, MD, MPH, Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Vincent Obstetrics and Gynecology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Yawkey 9E, Boston, MA. E-mail: mdelcarmen@partners.org

© 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.