Breast-Health Screening
Perceptions of Chinese Canadian
Immigrant Women
Immigrant & Racialized Women’s Health
February 21, 2014
Heidi Sin RN, PhD
 Problem and purpose of the study
 Approach
 Research questions
 Study participants
 Data collection
 Results and Interpretation
 Recommendations
 Implications for Practices
 Breast cancer is a prominent type of cancer in women.
 Breast cancer accounted for 458,000 deaths globally.
 In Canada, 22,700 individuals diagnosed with breast
cancer along with 5,100 cancer-related deaths in 2012.
 Regular breast-health screening could reduce
mortality from breast cancer.
 Screening rate was low within ethno-cultural groups.
 Result in high mortality and morbidity.
To explore the perceptions of breast-health screening
among Chinese Canadian immigrant women, aged 30 to
69 and barriers that prevented them from having breasthealth screening.
Research Method and Design
 Qualitative case study
 Demographic survey
 Semistructured interview
 Focus group
Research Question
What are the perceptions of breast-health screening
among Chinese Canadian immigrant women aged 30 to
Research Subquestions
 Types of preventive health measures
 Perceived benefits of breast-health screening
 Obstacles to breast-health screening
 Females’ perceptions of condition, situations, or
contexts that influence their lived experiences with
breast-health screening
 Perceived role of breast-health screening
Characteristics of population
 Chinese women aged 30 to 69.
 Born and received education in mainland China.
 First language is Mandarin.
 Have immigrated to Canada for 5 years or less.
 Residents in the Greater Toronto Area.
 Acquired no history of breast cancer.
 Approached Welcome Centre Immigrant Services-
Markham South or The Cross-Cultural Community
Services Association.
Data Collection
 Pilot study
 Fifteen semistructured interviews
 Two focus groups
Results and Interpretations
Subquestion 1: What types of preventive health measures used by
Chinese Canadian immigrant women?
Theme: Influence of Chinese cultural beliefs and practices to
maintain health
 Healthy eating
 Physical activities
 Positive attitude
 Regular daily activities
Results and Interpretations
Subquestion 2: What are the perceived benefits of breasthealth screening for Chinese Canadian immigrant
Theme: Important role of a female caregiver in a family
 Early detection of breast cancer
 Prevention of illness
 Beneficial to individuals and family members
Results and Interpretations
Subquestion 3: What are the obstacles to breast-health
screening for Chinese Canadian immigrant women?
Theme: Accessibility to and utilization of screening services
Lack of knowledge
Language proficiency
Perceived illness
Results and Interpretations
Subquestion 4: What are the females’ perceptions of
condition, situations, or contexts that influence their lived
experiences with breast-health screening?
Two themes: Lack of preventive health concept and
experiences affect participation
Lack of preventive health concept
 Perceived illnesses
 Awareness of breast cancer impact
Results and Interpretations
Subquestion 4: What are the females’ perceptions of
condition, situations, or contexts that influence their lived
experiences with breast-health screening?
Theme: Experiences affect participation
 Positive / negative perceptions of screening
 Someone with breast cancer
 Screening experiences
 Screening instructions
 Positive / negative emotional responses
Results and Interpretations
Subquestion 5: What perceived role does breast-health
screening play in Chinese Canadian immigrant women’s
Theme: Lack of information about breast-health screening
 Benefits of screening
 Importance of screening
 Individual responsibility
 Breast-health screening program
 Current health status
 Develop culturally-sensitive linguistic programs and
educational materials in consideration of Chinese
health beliefs.
 Establish better communication between health care
providers and clients and recommendation by
 Include breast-health screening as a standard item
within annual check-up.
 Promotion of breast-health screening through ethnic
 Expand the operating hours for screening clinic and
initiation of mobile women’s clinic.
 Provide translation services, comfortable and
supportive environment at the breast-health screening
 Provide linguistic culturally educational program to
include preventive health concept.
 Provide community-based outreach educational
programs and a lay health educator program.
Implications for Practices
To increase participation in breast-health screening:
 Increase knowledge.
 Reduce perceived barriers, facilitate perceived
benefits, minimize negative experiences.
Promote self care message.
Involve physicians.
Send reminders through a systematic approach.
Remove embarrassment by given options.
Review health organizations role.
Conduct further longitudinal studies.
Thank you!!
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