Knowledge, Practices and Education of Clients on Cervical Cancer Screening among Female Health Care Workers In Plateau State Nigeria.
Background: Most patients with cancer of the cervix present late with poor prognosis. Health workers' knowledge and utilization of the screening services might influence their clients. The aim of this study was to determine the knowledge, practice and education of clients on cervical cancer and its screening among female healthcare workers in plateau state.
Material and Methods: This was a cross-sectional survey of 182 female healthcare workers in selected Primary Healthcare Centres (PHC) in Plateau state Nigeria. Semi-structured, self- administered questionnaires were used to obtain data which was analyzed using Epi info statistical software version 3.3.2
Results: Those aware of cancer of the cervix comprised of Community Health Extension Workers (44.0%) and Nurse/ Midwives (17.6%) among others. Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), multiple sexual partners and early sexual intercourse were among the cited risk factors. Although, 136(87.2%) of the “aware” respondents accepted that cancer of the cervix could be prevented, 33.8% of them could not identify regular cervical screening as a preventive strategy. Similarly, 140(89%) knew about the cervical cancer screening but only 12(8.6%) had actually been screened (p < 0.005). Additionally, only 40% of the “aware” respondents had ever educated their clients.
Conclusion: The knowledge and practice of the health workers about cancer of the cervix has not been commensurately translated to utilization of screening services or education of clients. Strategies such as seminars and workshops to train as well as motivate health workers towards the utilization of screening services should be explored.
Key Words: Knowledge, Practices, education, Cancer of the cervix, cervical screening, female Health Care workers.