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Health Services




Women in Cameroon as well as those residing in the Maryland-Washington Metropolitan area and the Diasporas suffer a disproportionate rate of cervical cancer morbidity and mortality due to the vast disproportion in the distribution of healthcare services. The widespread human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination holds promise for helping to attenuate the disproportion in cervical cancer screening and prevention services. Literature from other countries including Cameroon suggests that barriers to the uptake of cervical cancer screening include: culture, religion, the psychological impact of embarrassment, the influence of husbands, cost, discomfort, and vulnerability. The purpose of this study was to gain an understanding of the perceptions of the Cameroonian women regarding cervical cancer prevention, taking into consideration parental attitudes, their knowledge, and their beliefs about the acceptance and usage of the HPV vaccines and other screening services. A survey was designed from a combination of 2 separate instruments as developed, tested, and validated by Kahn et al. (2008) and Griffioen et al. (2012) for this qualitative study. The open-ended survey questions were completed by women who volunteered to participate. Data were collected between April and May, 2015. Eighty women volunteered to participate but only 30 were able to return the completed survey. Using the NVivo software version 10, data were inductively coded, analyzed, and major themes were derived. Results showed that although the women knew about HPV, the vaccines, and Pap test, there was still a need for more education. The results of this study will be provided to law makers in Cameroon to reconsider the educational needs and distribution of healthcare services for women in Cameroon.