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NCPD Article

Rural Cancer Disparities: Understanding Implications for Breast and Cervical Cancer Diagnoses

Leslie R. Carnahan
Randa Abdelrahim
Carol E. Ferrans
Genevieve R. Rizzo
Yamile Molina
Arden Handler
CJON 2021, 25(5), 10-16 DOI: 10.1188/21.CJON.S1.10-16

Background: Rural populations experience several disparities, influenced by structural-, community-, and individual-level barriers, across the breast and cervical cancer continuum.

Objectives: This study seeks to identify structural-, community-, and individual-level barriers that affect rural populations across the cancer continuum, understand the role of nurses serving rural populations in breast and cervical cancer screening and diagnostics, and provide recommendations for working with rural patients.

Methods: This is a secondary analysis of qualitative interviews conducted with public health nurses serving rural populations.

Findings: Emergent themes indicate that rural populations experience barriers that affect disparities across the breast and cervical cancer continuum, including a changing healthcare landscape, access to cancer-focused care, access to insurance, collective poverty, and demographic factors. Nurses working with rural communities can address these disparities as they fulfill multiple roles and responsibilities.

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