Understanding how older African American women with disabilities access mammography screening : an exploratory descriptive qualitative study
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Disability is a mental or physical impairment that limits one or more activities of daily living. According to the Chartbook on Women and Disability (2014) website, one out of every five Americans in the United States has a disability. Although, the rates of mammography screening over the past 30 years for African American women have increased, there are barriers that still exist for older African American women with disabilities. Reports indicated that women with disabilities are at risk for having limited access to mammography screening for various reasons, some of which include barriers (Piotrowski & Snell, 2007). However, little has been found in the literature concerning barriers to mammography screening among African American women over age 50 with disabilities. The purpose of this study was to describe the perspectives of African American women, 50 years of age and older, with a disability (mobility impairment) in accessing mammography screening. This study used an exploratory descriptive qualitative design. The Health Belief Model was used to guide the study. Three research questions were developed regarding perceived threats and cues to action, perceived barriers, and perceived facilitators for mammography screening for African American women aged 50 years and older with disabilities. The overall theme that emerged from the study was “I have to, my life depends on it.” The findings of this study have implications that could be used by nurses to advocate for better ways to improve mammography screening for older African American women with disabilities who are in need of a mammogram. By providing better accommodations for older African American women with disabilities, these women will have easier access to mammography screening and perhaps have a more positive experience.