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Prev Med. 2004 Jul;39(1):99-110.

Where's Maria? A video to increase awareness about breast cancer and mammography screening among low-literacy Latinas.

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Department of Psychology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523, USA.



The need exists to educate and motivate medically disadvantaged Latinas to engage in regular mammography screening to reduce their high breast cancer (BC) mortality risk due to the illness' late detection.


Qualitative research methods [e.g., focus groups, key informants] were primarily used during the basic and formative research phases in preproducing and producing a breast cancer educational video for low-literacy Latinas.


An 8-min video was created in an Entertainment-Education soap opera format. The purpose of the video is to create awareness about breast cancer and to motivate low-literacy Latinas who are at the precontemplation stage of behavior change to consider engaging in mammography screening. Thus, the video presents a compelling story of a Latina with whom the target audience can identify and become involved with the unfolding events of her story as she realizes her risk for breast cancer and struggles with the decision to engage in mammography. The content and format of the video include culturally relevant clues and modeling to influence Latinas' cognitive and subjective processes involved in making the decision to change.


Complex attitudinal and behavioral issues can be effectively targeted to decrease the influence that psychological barriers exert in Latinas low breast cancer screening rates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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