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J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2011 Feb;20(2):225-30. doi: 10.1089/jwh.2010.1993.

The cross-cultural variation of predictors of human papillomavirus vaccination intentions.

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  • 1Center for AIDS Intervention Research, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202, USA.



The influence of health beliefs on human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine acceptability have been extensively documented in past research. However, studies documenting the generalizability of prior findings to culturally diverse participants are lacking. The importance of generalizability studies is underscored by the immense disparities in cervical cancer rates across ethnicities. Moreover, theory in cultural psychology suggests that beliefs derived from personal expectations may not be the strongest predictors of intentions in individuals socialized in collectivist cultures. The purpose of this research was to investigate the strongest predictors of mothers' intentions to vaccinate their daughters across three cultural groups: Hispanic, non-Hispanic white, and African American.


One hundred fifty mothers were recruited from Public Health Department clinics in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Mothers were asked to answer measures that assessed personal and normative predictors of intentions.


Results indicated that predictors of vaccination intentions varied cross-culturally. Specifically, culture moderated the influence of norms on intentions.


Interventions designed for Hispanics may be more effective if norms, rather than attitudes, are targeted.

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