HPV awareness prevents positive infections (HAPPI) among HIV positive Haitian women
Background: In South Florida, Black women are diagnosed with HIV and cervical cancer more often than other populations. Haitian Immigrant women, the largest growing Black ethnic group in Miami, experience the highest rates of cervical cancer and account for one of the largest populations diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. To develop a relevant intervention addressing this disparity, we examined HPV/cervical cancer knowledge among HIV-positive Haitian women in Miami. Method: In August 2011, three focus groups with 21 HIV-positive Haitian women were completed in Miami, Florida. A Community Health Worker (CHW) moderated discussions on HPV/Cervical cancer knowledge, screening behaviors, and HIV issues associated with HPV. Groups were conducted in Haitian Kreyol, digitally recorded, and later interpreted and transcribed into English. Results: Grounded Theory analysis revealed that participants had no knowledge about HPV screening guidelines, the HPV vaccine, or HPV transmission as a caustic agent in cervical cancer. Most participants thought HPV caused infertility and was similar to HIV, in that there is no cure. HIV stigma was identified as a barrier that limited interactions with health professions. Few understood the purpose of Papanicolaou smears and HIV providers were described as ineffective educators. To improve HPV/Cervical Cancer knowledge and screening behaviors, participants proposed a CHW-led educational intervention that utilizes flipcharts containing images rather than written materials. Conclusion: Our sample of HIV-positive Haitian women in Miami had limited understanding of HPV/cervical cancer and associated screening guidelines. A community-based educational intervention may be more efficacious than existing resources to improve HPV/Cervical Cancer knowledge among this population.
Advocacy for health and health education
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Identify the HPV/cervical cancer educational needs that are present among HIV-positive Haitian women.
Keyword(s): Women and HIV/AIDS, Health Needs
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have taken part in numerous federally funded grants that focus on the health disparities of Haitian women as it pertains to HPV/cervical cancer, HIV, and health outcomes. My scientific interest is to develop culturally-sensitive programs that seek to eliminate health disparities in this population. To do this I am focused on learning more from the community to understand their needs.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines,
and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed
in my presentation.