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Soc Sci Med. 1995 Aug;41(3):365-74.

Determinants of persistent compliance with screening for colorectal cancer.

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Department of Surgery, University of Nottingham, England.


Mass population screening for colorectal cancer is currently being evaluated by means of randomized controlled trials. These trials point to the likelihood that, if implemented, the level of both initial and sustained compliance will prevent the full potential of screening being realised. The paper opens by reviewing the evidence on determinants of compliance, both initial and longer term, although little empirical evidence on adherence to repeated screening is currently available. The paper then presents the results of a survey of persistent compliers and non-compliers within the English screening trial, in order to identify those characteristics most closely associated with persistent compliance behaviour. Persistent compliers are found, inter alia, to be of higher socio-economic classes than persistent non-compliers, to have more personal and family experiences of illness and to visit their dentists more regularly. The results suggest that generalized attempts at compliance enhancement would be ineffectual against the prevailing background characteristics of the non-compliant population, and that the more overt targeting of efforts in this respect is to be preferred.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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