Awareness and utilization of cervical cancer screening services among primary health care providers in Zaria

Published: January 20, 2020
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  • Anisah Yahya Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, College of Medical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.
  • Zubair Hadi Ismail Department of Radiotherapy and Oncology, College of Medical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.
  • Umma Suleiman Bawa Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, College of Medical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.

Cervical cancer screening services have led to a significant decrease in the incidence of cervical cancer in countries were such services are implemented as population-based services. Cervical cancer still remains the most commonly diagnosed cancer in several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Eastern Asia. This study explored the awareness, utilization and provision of cervical screening services among Primary Health Care providers in Zaria, Nigeria. A qualitative study was conducted among Primary Health Care providers in Zaria Local Government Area Kaduna State Nigeria. Five Primary Health Care centres were purposively selected for the study. Data was collected using Focus Group discussion method. The data from the discussion sessions were recorded on tape and transcribed verbatim to capture the exact messages. The transcripts were then analysed into themes. Majority of the participants were within 30-39-year age range, 75% were females, 64.3% were Community Health Extension Workers’ and 42.9% had >10 years working experience. The major themes were awareness of cervical cancer, awareness of cervical cancer screening methods, knowledge about cervical cancer screening methods and utilization. Many participants were not well informed about cervical cancer screening methods. Uptake among female participants was also low. In light of these findings, there is a need to train the health personnel in Primary Health Care centres on cervical cancer screening so that they can adequately educate women on cervical cancer screening.

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