Although the incidence of cervical cancer has been declining steadily since the Pap smear became standard of care in the U.S., many African immigrants are unfamiliar with this screening test and its potential benefits. Using data from the CDC’s National Health Interview Surveys, we identified respondents who were black women living in the United States, distinguishing U.S.-born (n = 620) and African-born (n = 36). We constructed a measure of current Pap status and used multivariate logistic regression models to compare Pap status between the two groups. Controlling for income, age, education, health insurance, and marital status, African American women were over 3 times more likely to have reported a current Pap smear than African-born women [Adjusted OR = 3.37, 95 % CI = (1.89, 5.96)]. Being an African-born woman was the strongest predictor of current Pap status. Distinguishing immigrant status in an analysis of cervical cancer screening rates for black women indicated much lower Pap smear rates for African-born women, compared with African-American women. More research on the impact of education and culturally specific care is needed to address the disparity in Pap smear rates for African-born black women.
- Cervical cancer
- Pap smear