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Prev Med. 1997 Nov-Dec;26(6):817-24.

Understanding mammography intention and utilization among women in an inner city public hospital clinic.

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  • 1Centers for Public Health Research and Evaluation, Seattle, Washington 98105, USA.



Most research on mammography utilization has been conducted among middle-class women. There is a need for research to identify factors affecting mammography utilization among low-income women to develop effective interventions for this underserved subgroup.


An expanded theory of reasoned action guided this research among low-income inner-city women who use a public hospital. Qualitative interviews were conducted to develop a questionnaire with items relevant to this population. The questionnaire included 5 affect measures, 13 behavioral beliefs, 5 sources of influence, and 6 facilitator/constraint measures. The survey was mailed to 584 women ages 50 to 69 identified through the hospital database.


After those ineligible and undeliverable were excluded, responses rates were obtained from 361 women (84% adjusted response rate). Sixty-six percent had a mammogram within the previous year and 58% were very sure that they would get a mammogram in the next year. Affect, attitude, subjective norm, and facilitator scores were computed. All four constructs had significant correlations (r = 0.38 to 0.41) with intention to get a mammogram in the next year and all had significant multiple regression weights (R = 0.54). All but three items making up the model components were significantly correlated with screening intention.


The data from applying a behavioral model indicate that intervention efforts to increase mammography utilization among low-income women should target all four model components. A clinic-based intervention could use multiple methods to deliver messages developed to target each of the model component items found to be associated with mammography intention.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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