Partnership delivers findings on cancer screening uptake in South Asian women

A piece of research that has involved collecting and critically analysing hundreds of studies from around the world has been completed, thanks to academic and healthcare partners working together.  

The systematic review of social, cultural and individual influences on the beliefs, attitudes and behaviours of South Asian women regarding asymptomatic screening for female cancers, is currently being prepared for publication in peer reviewed journals after a year of exhaustive analysis and in-depth study.

The incidence of some female cancers in South Asian women, such as breast cancer, is equal to and exceeding national rates in the UK. South Asian women diagnosed with female cancers have poorer relative survival rates than the national average. Full reasons for this are unclear, but poorer survival is partly attributable to South Asian women’s lower uptake of screening opportunities, which may be attributable to cultural factors within South Asian populations.

Co-Principal Investigator on the project, Dr Pooja Saini, of the University of Liverpool’s Department of Health Service Research, said; “This work will inform Interventions directed toward early detection of female cancers in South Asian women from hard to reach communities. Such interventions could improve cancer mortality and morbidity outcomes in these groups and help to reduce health inequalities.

“There has been no systematic collation of this body of research with the intention of developing recommendations for health promotion practice in a UK context. It is a very positive step forward.”

The research is the latest output from the Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care North West Coast (CLAHRC NWC).  Made up of over 35 partners including Clinical Commissioning Groups, Hospitals, Local Authorities and Universities, it is funded by the National Institute for Health Research to deliver research which can influence the reduction of health inequalities across North West communities.

It formed part of the portfolio of research managed by the CLAHRC NWC’s Evidence Synthesis Collaboration Theme.

The University of Liverpool, Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust (RLBUHT), University Hospital South Manchester NHS Trust (UHSM) and University of Central Lancashire were amongst the partners involved in the latest piece of innovative work which has focused on female cancer screening uptake in Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Indian and Sri Lankan populations.

Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon Mysore Chandrashekar of RLBUHT, a Partner in CLAHRC NWC, said: “It’s been a pleasure to be part of such a unique collaboration, providing clinical guidance on this important topic. We want the findings to contribute towards cancer screening policy in primary care communities and moving forward take the findings to as wide an audience as possible.”

Public involvement has been critical to the success of the project with two Public Advisers being an integral part of the Steering Group, overseeing the progress of the research. It has also proved to be an invaluable exercise for some of the partner’s frontline staff.

“The public advisers and partner staff have been offered capacity building opportunities including training in conducting research, systematic reviews and critical appraisal of existing scientific research. These skills have empowered partner staff to write their own research proposals for service improvements with real world evidence based knowledge and empowered public advisors to become involved in the wider CLAHRC NWC work,” said Pooja.         

A unique and personal insight into the research by RLUBHT’s Deb Roberts, who undertook a secondment as a Research Nurse on the project, is available to view on the CLAHRC NWC website.

Professor Mark Gabbay, Director of CLAHRC NWC, said: “We are grateful to RLBUHT for funding and supporting the secondment of Deb and time of their staff working on the project, as part of their commitment to the NIHR CLAHRC NWC collaboration, which has now generated this very valuable piece of research.”

Findings from the research will also be presented at several key local and national conferences in autumn of 2016 with formal submission to peer reviewed journals by October. 

Photo (L-R): Mr Mysore Chandrashekar, Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon (RLBUHT), Dr Pooja Saini, Knowledge Exchange Theme Manager (University of Liverpool/CLAHRC NWC), Gillian Naylor, Senior Nurse for Research Development & Innovation (RLBUHT), Deb Roberts, Clinical Nurse Specialist (RLUBHT), Dr Steve Brown, Senior Lecturer in Clinical Psychology (University of Liverpool/CLAHRC NWC), Dr Mike Beadsworth, Consultant in Infectious Diseases (RLBUHT).


More articles     Posted on: 28 July 2017