Factors contributing to low participation in mammography screening in Papua New Guinea

Pape R., Kelly Spuur, P. Umo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: The aim of this paper is to describe the current state of mammography screening services in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and to document factors thought to contribute to low participation in the free mammography screening service at the Pacific International Hospital (PIH), Port Moresby.
Method: Women attending for mammography screening at PIH between August 2006 and July 2010 were invited to complete a survey investigating environmental, political, social, financial, cultural and health factors thought to be contributing to low participation in the mammography screening service.
Ethics approval and permission to collect data was granted through the University of Papua New Guinea, School of Medicine and Health Sciences Research and Ethics Committee and by the Medical Director and
Chief Operating Officer of PIH.
Results: The reasons for low participation were found to be multifactorial; difficult environmental factors 42.86%; financial dependency factors 40.54%; cultural factors related to exposing the body 50.03%, social factors (sexual harassment) 77.6%, political factors 4.29% and health factors including
poor health 54.54%.
Conclusion: The study demonstrated that in this snapshot of PNG women, the low participation rate in the free mammography screening program at PIH was influenced by various interrelated factors inherent in both the PNG environment and culture, in particular lack of transport infrastructure, financial burden and sexual harassment. As low participation directly impacts upon the high breast
cancer mortality in PNG women, a more comprehensive study of the women of PNG is required to validate this research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e151-e158
Number of pages8
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 01 Aug 2016


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