Colorectal Cancer Knowledge and Screening Habits among Refugee Populations in DFW




Raines-Milenkov, Amy
Kwentua, Victoria
Baker, Eva
Subedi, Radhika
Thein, Emelda
Qureshi, Iram


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Purpose: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the fourth most common cancer worldwide. Although resources are available to screen for and to treat CRC, refugees living in the United States report low levels of screening. Over the past several years, Texas has resettled the largest numbers of refugees, yet little research has investigated the need for colorectal cancer screening in refugee populations. This study aimed to assess local refugees’ current knowledge of and experience with colon/rectal cancer and screening. This information is needed to guide effective CRC education and screening efforts among this underserved population. Methods: Refugees, previously enrolled in a community-based refugee health program, the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), were contacted by bilingual lay health educators to complete a 23-question phone interview on their familiarity with CRC. The survey was translated into Nepali and Karen by a professional translator, and included detailed descriptions of colon cancer and available screening methods. Descriptive statistics were compiled using statistical analysis software. Results: Twenty-nine of the 43 eligible participants (ages 50-75) agreed to participate. 72% of participants were unaware of colon cancer, and 97% wanted more education on the subject. Familiarity with the screening process and physician recommendation were strong motivators to complete a CRC screening. Conclusions: Local refugee populations are receptive to CRC screening. Programs such as BBI have the structure in place to provide culturally and linguistically appropriate education and tailored evidence-based interventions, which are necessary to reduce health disparities when it comes to CRC screening.


Research Appreciation Day Award Winner - 2017 School of Public Health & Public Health Student Association - 3rd Place Poster Presentation