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Cancer Control. 2003 Sep-Oct;10(5 Suppl):37-44.

Development of a spiritually based breast cancer educational booklet for African American women.

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  • 1Health Communication Research Laboratory, Saint Louis University, School of Public Health, St. Louis, MO 63104, USA.


Breast cancer is a significant health problem among African American women. Since the church is a viable health education venue for this population, spiritual cancer communication is a timely area of study to promote cancer education. In partnership with an African American church, we developed an educational booklet on breast cancer early detection from within a spiritual framework. Working with an advisory panel of women from the church, we facilitated the development of the booklet content and design. Panel members selected the spiritual themes and scripture used to frame the early detection messages, and they wrote messages to be included in the booklet. Meetings with focus groups were conducted to generate feedback on the booklet design and content. Overall feedback from the advisory panel and three focus groups regarding this level 4 spiritually based cancer communication intervention for African American women was generally consistent, showing strong preferences for design and content. We believe that this spiritually based approach may be one way to make cancer communication more culturally appropriate for African American women.

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