STUDY DESIGN: In this cross sectional study, between November 2013 to March 2014, in a public university, a convenient sampling method was used. A total of 716 respondents were recruited and interviewed with a set of standard questionnaires for assessment of knowledge, perception and attitudes towards HPV and predictor variables associated with level of knowledge.
RESULTS: Almost half (48.9%) of the respondents scored less than 5 and were categorised as having poor knowledge. Three hundred and twelve (43.6%) respondents had moderate knowledge and only 54 (7.5%) respondents exhibited good knowledge with the score of 11 and above. Only 142 (20%) students perceived themselves to be vulnerable to HPV infection though 560 (78.2%) students thought that HPV infection is a serious disease. Perceived benefits and desire to be vaccinated were significantly associated with gender (p=0.000) and knowledge of HPV vaccine and cervical cancer (p=0.000).
CONCLUSIONS: The level of knowledge regarding HPV among the pre-university students was low. However, student intention for vaccination increased with increasing level of knowledge. Thus, efforts to improve knowledge and awareness should be prioritised to increase uptake of the HPV vaccination programme and hence reduce morbidity and mortality from consequences of HPV infection, including cervical carcinoma.
METHODOLOGY: This qualitative in-depth interview study was conducted in January 2010 with 30 university students from different faculties, i.e.:International Medical School (IMS), Faculty of Health and Life Sciences (FHLS), Faculty of Business Management and Professional Studies (FBMP) and Faculty of Information Sciences and Engineering (FISE) of the Management and Science University (MSU), Shah Alam, Malaysia. After consent was obtained from all participants, the interviewer wrote down the conversations during the interview sessions. The data obtained were classified into various categories and analyzed manually.
RESULTS: The majority of participants 25 (83%) had heard about cervical cancer, while 16 (53.3%) have never heard of HPV. Only five participants (17%) mentioned that HPV is the cause of cervical cancer. Ten participants (33.3%) did not know any causes. The majority 16 (53.3%) did not know the mode of HPV transmission. The majority of participants 22 (73.3%) mentioned that they had not been vaccinated against HPV. Out of 22, 16 (53.3%) agreed to be vaccinated in the future to protect themselves from cervical cancer and five (17%) participants mentioned they are not willing because of the uncertain safety of the available vaccines and their side effects.
CONCLUSION: This study showed relatively poor knowledge about HPV and its vaccines, pointing to urgency of educational campaigns aimed at students in the public and government universities to promote HPV vaccination among this highly eligible population.
METHODS: A literature search was made for reports on implementation, perceptions and reception of cervical screening in Malaysia published between January 2000 and September 2008.
RESULTS: Despite offering Pap smears for free since 1995, only 47.3% of Malaysian women have been screened. Several factors may have contributed to this. No national call-recall system has been established. Women are informed about cervical screening primarily through mass media rather than being individually invited. Smears are free of charge if taken in public hospitals and clinics, but the waiting times are often long. The health care system is unequally dense, with rural states being underserved compared to their urban counterparts. If the screening coverage was to increase, a shortage of smear-readers would become increasingly apparent.
CONCLUSIONS: Improving screening coverage will remain an important strategy for combating cervical cancer in Malaysia. The focus should be on the policy-making context, improving awareness and the screening infrastructure, and making the service better accessible to women.
METHODS: Data from 87 patients with cervical cancer recruited from a referral hospital in Yogyakarta province, Indonesia, from an earlier study of health-related quality of life were used in this study. The differences among the utility scores derived from the four value sets were determined using the Friedman test. Performance of the psychometric properties of the four value sets versus visual analogue scale (VAS) was assessed. Intraclass correlation coefficients and Bland-Altman plots were used to test the agreement among the utility scores. Spearman ρ correlation coefficients were used to assess convergent validity between utility scores and patients' sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. With respect to known-group validity, the Kruskal-Wallis test was used to examine the differences in utility according to the stages of cancer.
RESULTS: There was significant difference among utility scores derived from the four value sets, among which the Malaysian value set yielded higher utility than the other three value sets. Utility obtained from the Malaysian value set had more agreements with VAS than the other value sets versus VAS (intraclass correlation coefficients and Bland-Altman plot tests results). As for the validity, the four value sets showed equivalent psychometric properties as those that resulted from convergent and known-group validity tests.
CONCLUSIONS: In the absence of an Indonesian value set, the Malaysian value set was more preferable to be used compared with the other value sets. Further studies on the development of an Indonesian value set need to be conducted.