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J Med Screen. 2008;15(2):91-6. doi: 10.1258/jms.2008.008011.

Sociodemographic predictors of HPV testing and vaccination acceptability: results from a population-representative sample of British women.

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  • 1Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT, UK.



To examine sociodemographic predictors of self-reported screening attendance, intention to accept human papillomavirus (HPV) testing and willingness to accept vaccination for a daughter under 16.


Home-based, computer-assisted interviews with a population representative sample of British women.


Participants were selected using random probability sampling of the Postcode Address File, 994 women aged 25-64 were included in these analyses. Women reported their attendance at cervical screening and intention to accept an HPV test. A subsample of those with a daughter under 16 years (n = 296) reported their willingness to accept HPV vaccination for their daughter.


Screening attendance was associated with education level (odds ratio [OR] = 1.66, confidence interval [95% CI]: 1.07-2.56) and being married (OR = 2.04, 95% CI: 1.37-3.03). Acceptance of HPV testing was predicted by regular attendance for cervical screening (OR = 1.58, 95% CI: 1.03-2.42) and being from a white background (OR = 2.20, 95% CI: 1.18-4.13). Daughter's age was the only predictor of HPV vaccine acceptance, with mothers whose youngest daughter was 13-16 years old being the most likely to accept vaccination (OR = 2.91, 95% CI: 1.27-6.65).


In contrast to screening attendance, ethnicity plays an important role in HPV testing. Specific cultural barriers should be identified and addressed to ensure ethnic disparities in testing are limited. While marital status is associated with screening attendance, HPV testing could overcome this bias. Sociodemographic variables seem to play a limited role in HPV vaccine acceptance among mothers making vaccine decisions for their daughters, but as with other studies, age of daughter is important. The scientific reasons for vaccinating at 12-13 years should be emphasized in HPV information.

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