RTC:Rural Rural Institute University of Montana

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New study on reach of Montana Cancer Control Program among women with disability

Women with disabilities have lower screening rates for breast and cervical cancer [and] emerging research suggests that rural geographic settings may present greater disparities in screening utilization. This study examined whether women with and without disabilities using Montana Cancer Control Program (MCCP) differ in use of breast (BCS) and cervical (CCS) screening services, receipt of and follow up for inconclusive or abnormal results, and compliance with BCS and CCS USPSTF recommendations. [Disability status was defined as] experiencing one or more of these limitations…1) hearing difficulty; 2) vision difficulty; 3) cognitive difficulty; 4) ambulatory difficulty; 5) self-care difficulty; 6) independent living difficulty. [Of women utilizing MCCP,] 145 reported a hearing difficulty, 62 a vision difficulty, 424 a cognitive difficulty, 465 an ambulatory difficulty, 122 a self-care difficulty, and 237 an independent living difficulty. Women with disability reported a higher prevalence of tobacco use, breast problems and having a hysterectomy. No significant differences were detected between [these two populations] in their use of MCCP screening. Those with health insurance were more likely to be in compliance with both BCS and CCS; however, women with one or more disability characteristics were more likely to not be in compliance. While the MCCP is reaching women with disabilities, further research should examine issues regarding physical accessibility of mammography facilities/equipment and gynecologic services.

Froehlich-Grobe, K., Shropshire, W.C., Zimmerman, H., VanBrunt, J., & Betts, A. (2016). Reach of the Montana Cancer Control Program to women with disabilities. Journal of Community Health, 41(3), 650-657. DOI: 10.1007/s10900-015-0141-y

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