Cervical cancer prevention practices amongst flower farm workers in Naivasha, Kenya
Background: WHO estimates that every year 500,000 cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed each year worldwide representing 12% of all cancers in females, and more than half of them die from it. Regular screening for cervical cancer with PAP smears or VIA/VILI has been shown to reduce the risk of cervical cancer development. Workplace cervical cancer education and screening have been identified as useful prevention interventions.
Objectives: To assess the current knowledge of cervical cancer, attitudes and practices towards cervical cancer screening among the flower farm workers in Naivasha, Kenya.
Design: This was a descriptive cross-sectional study.
Methods: A random sample of 391 flower farm workers in five farms in Naivasha were interviewed using a standard questionnaire. Knowledge about cervical cancer, attitudes towards cervical cancer screening and practices regarding screening were measured.
Results: Of the 391 respondents, 32.2% were aware of cancer of the cervix, 72.2% of these knew that the disease is preventable. Fourty five point five percent associated cervical cancer causation with multiple sexual partners and HPV infection. Only 3.3% were aware of HPV vaccine. Seven point two percent of the
female respondents had ever been screened for cervical cancer and of these 78.6% were screened within the past 1 year. Fourty six percent were screened voluntarily (own request) and another 46% were screened on providers’ advice. Of the male respondents, only 25% had partners who had ever been screened.
Conclusion: The knowledge of cervical cancer and prevention by screening was low amongst the flower farm workers. The screening rate amongst the workers was very low. The findings of this survey warrant a very strong recommendation for the setting-up of workplace policies and mechanisms for cervical cancer education, screening and prevention interventions.
Keywords: Cervical cancer, Awareness, Prevention, Workplace
The Journal owns the copyright, however, authors may use their own material elsewhere provided acknowledgement is made to the journal as the original place of publication.