Date of Award

1-1-2009

Document Type

Campus Access Dissertation

Department

Health Promotion, Education and Behavior

First Advisor

Heather M. Brandt

Abstract

Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination has the potential to significantly reduce HPV-associated outcomes if measures are taken to promote acceptance and uptake. The purpose of the study was to explore historical and cultural influences and health beliefs on HPV vaccine acceptance among Black college students. Five hundred seventy-five Black male and female college students were recruited from three Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in South Carolina (SC). Students were voluntarily asked to complete a cross-sectional survey to explore factors related to HPV awareness, knowledge, and vaccine acceptance. The overall mean scores on the 10-item HPV knowledge scale and 6-item Pap smear knowledge scale was 5.12 and 3.70. Personal (76.9%) and parental vaccine acceptance for daughters (74.8%) was high; while parental acceptance for boys (58.5%) and mandatory acceptance for girls (42.2% ) and boys (35.8%) were lower. Significant correlates of personal vaccine acceptance included: parental vaccine acceptance for daughters (OR = 14.16), cues to action (OR = 2.34), and health care system distrust (OR = .67). Parental vaccine acceptance for sons (OR = 30.45), personal vaccine acceptance (OR = 13.31), HPV awareness (OR = 9.02), mandatory vaccine acceptance for girls (OR = 5.11), and perceived susceptibility to HPV infection (OR = .61) emerged as significant correlates of parental vaccine acceptance for daughters. Males compared to females were less likely to have heard of HPV (p<.001), scored lower on the HPV knowledge measure (p<.001), and were less likely to report interest in vaccination (p=.001). Findings can be used to inform development of educational and communication programs to promote HPV vaccine acceptance and address historical and cultural barriers to HPV vaccine uptake among southern Black college students.

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