The effect of access and satisfaction on regular mammogram and papanicolaou test screening in a multiethnic population

Carol P. Somkin, Stephen J. McPhee, Tung Nguyen, Susan L Stewart, Sarah J. Shema, Bang Nguyen, Rena Pasick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Background: Access and satisfaction are determinants of preventive service use, but few studies have evaluated their role in breast and cervical cancer screening in multiethnic populations. Objectives: We sought to investigate the relationship between race/ethnicity, access, satisfaction, and regular mammogram and Papanicolaou test receipt in 5 racial/ethnic groups. Research Design: We conducted a telephone survey in 4 languages. Subjects: Our subjects were black, Chinese, Filipino, Latino, or white women aged 40 to 74 residing in Alameda County, California. Measures: Outcome: regular mammograms (last test within 15 months and another within 2 years prior) and Papanicolaou tests (36 months and 3 years, respectively). Independent: race/ethnicity, sociodemographic variables, access (health insurance, usual site of care, regular doctor, check-up within 12 months, knowing where to go, copayment for tests), and satisfaction (overall satisfaction scale, waiting times, test-related pain and embarrassment, test satisfaction). Results: Among women who had ever had a mammogram or Papanicolaou test, 54% and 77%, respectively, received regular screening. In multivariate analyses, regular mammography was positively associated with increased age (odds ratio [OR] 1.05 per year), private insurance (OR 1.7), check-up in the past year (OR 2.3), knowing where to go for mammography (OR 3.0), and greater satisfaction with processes of care (OR 1.04 per unit), and negatively with not knowing copayment amount (OR 0.4), too many forms to fill out (OR 0.5), embarrassment at the last mammogram (OR 0.6), and Filipino race/ethnicity. Similar results were found for regular Papanicolaou tests. Conclusions: Access and satisfaction are important predictors of screening but do little to explain racial/ethnic variation. Tailored interventions to improve regular mammography and Papanicolaou test screening in multiethnic populations are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)914-926
Number of pages13
JournalMedical Care
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2004


  • Access to care
  • Cancer screening
  • Mammography
  • Patient satisfaction
  • Race and ethnicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health(social science)
  • Health Professions(all)


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