Salud Pública de México
Print version ISSN 0036-3634
ARILLO-SANTILLAN, Edna et al. Knowledge of healthcare professionals on cervical cancer prevention. Alternatives for medical education. Salud pública Méx [online]. 2000, vol.42, n.1, pp.34-42. ISSN 0036-3634. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0036-36342000000100007.
OBJECTIVE: Several studies have shown the importance of health care professionals as predictors of the use of cervical cancer screening (CCS). MATERIAL AND METHODS: A cross- sectional study of 520 health care professionals in the State of Morelos during 1998, in order to evaluate and quantify their level of knowledge on the impact, etiology, screening, diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer. A 1 to 10 scale questionnaire was given, and the sample included family medicine specialists, general practitioners, specialist and general nurses, and social workers. Statistical analysis included analysis of variance and 95% confidence intervals. RESULTS: A knowledge mean of 4.74 (95% CI 4.57-4.88) was observed for a scale of 10; specialist physicians scored higher (mean 5.21, 95% CI 4.81-5.60) than social workers (mean 3.07, 95% CI 2.31-3.82). Periodicity of the Pap test in most cases was less than 1 year and there was poor consensus about the age period during which the Pap test should be obtained. The knowledge level was lower when trying to identify etiologic aspects and treatment perspectives. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study show that, besides the improvement of undergraduate academic programs, it is necessary to improve educational interventions for health care professionals through the updating, recycling, training, health education, and continuing medical education, among others, to promote professional competence and thus improve the quality of medical care.
Keywords : health personnel [awareness]; cervix neoplasms; mass screening; education; continuing; Mexico.