Examining the association between possessing a regular source of healthcare and adherence with cancer screenings among Haitian households in Little Haiti, Miami-Dade County, Florida

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Abstract

Immigrant minorities regularly experience higher incidence and mortality rates of cancer. Frequently, a variety of social determinants create obstacles for those individuals to get the screenings they need. This is especially true for Haitian immigrants, a particularly vulnerable immigrant population in South Florida, who have been identified as having low cancer screening rates. While Haitian immigrants have some of the lowest cancer screening rates in the country, there is little existing literature that addresses barriers to cancer screenings among the population of Little Haiti in Miami-Dade County, Florida. The objective of this study was to evaluate the association between having a regular source of healthcare and adherence to recommended cancer screenings in the Little Haiti population of Miami.

This secondary analysis utilized data collected from a random-sample, population-based household survey conducted from November 2011 to December 2012 among a geographic area approximating Little Haiti in Miami-Dade County, Florida. A total of 421 households identified as Haitian. The main exposure of interest was whether households possessed a regular source of care. Three separate outcomes were considered: adherence with colorectal cancer screening, mammogram adherence, and Pap smear adherence. Analysis was limited to households who met the age criteria for each outcome of interest. Bivariate associations were examined using the chi square test and Fisher exact test. Binary logistic regression was used to estimate unadjusted and adjusted odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

After adjusting for the head of household's education and household insurance status, households without a regular source of care were significantly less likely to adhere with colorectal cancer screening (OR = 0.33; 95% CI: 0.14–0.80) or mammograms (OR = 0.28; 95% CI: 0.11–0.75). Households with insurance coverage gaps were significantly less likely to adhere with mammograms (OR = 0.40; 95% CI: 0.17–0.97) or Pap smears (OR = 0.28; 95% CI: 0.13–0.58).

Our study explored adherence with multiple cancer screenings. We found a strong association between possessing a regular source of care and adherence with colorectal cancer screening and mammogram adherence. Targeted approaches to improving access to regular care may improve adherence to cancer screening adherence among this unique immigrant population.

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