Date of Conferral





Public Health


Peter Anderson


Barriers to Colorectal Cancer Screening in People Obtaining Care

From Community Mental Health Agencies


Kelly Gardiner

MSN, Wayne State University, 1997

BSN, Wayne State University, 1988

Dissertation Submitted in Fulfillment

of the Requirements for the Degree of

Doctor of Philosophy

Public Health

Walden University

August 2016

Despite being highly treatable with early intervention and preventative screenings, the overall mortality rate of colorectal cancer is substantially higher in participants with a preexisting mental disorder. Variables affecting the likelihood of completing screening for those with mental illnesses were unknown in people who obtain services from a Community Mental Health agency. Using the Health Belief Model, the proposed study investigated the effects of access to transportation, referral to screening, physical ability to complete the colonoscopy prep, type of procedure, awareness of the purpose of screening, anxiety, embarrassment, gender, race, and age to determine which affect completion of colorectal cancer screening. Significant relationships existed between embarrassment, fear of pain, fear of cancer, anxiety, physical ability to do testing, awareness of screening at age 50, FOBT vs Scope procedures, age of first screening, being told to get screening, knowing someone who had screening, and completion of colorectal cancer screening. In the binary logistic model Anxiety was negatively correlated and being told to get screening was positively correlated to completion of colorectal cancer screening and those choosing Scope were more likely to complete than those choosing FOBT. The results of this study may effect positive social change by providing healthcare providers with an increased understanding of variables that influence colorectal cancer screening completion among persons with a diagnosed mental illness, resulting in a changing agenda for effective mental and physical health care in this population.