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Table 2 Various factors influencing the participation rates of women in cervical cancer screening

From: Applying a gender lens on human papillomavirus infection: cervical cancer screening, HPV DNA testing, and HPV vaccination

Factors Main findings
Knowledge – a highly consistent factor contributing to higher participation of women in Pap screening [41, 50, 66]
SES – low socio-economic status is associated with higher cervical cancer rates, lower Pap smear rates, and inadequate follow up [41, 50, 51]
– women age 50+ with higher education are increasingly more up-to-date regarding screening services with each educational level [32]
Healthcare, access to healthcare, insurance – not having health insurance is associated with not having a recent Pap test in southern US women [41]
– universal healthcare appears to contribute to the reduction of socio-economic status related differences or differences in screening based on residential location [75]
– an older study however showed that social factors discourage Australia's Indigenous women's use of and access to health services for screening, diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer [24]
Age – younger women age 19–26 exhibit more knowledge and participate more in preventive practices than women age 40–70 [81]
Marital status – participation is higher in married women in Kuwait compared to unmarried women [50]
History of cervical infection, family history – higher prevalence of ever having a Pap test is observed in women with either personal or family history of cancer [50]
Health expert’s willingness to give screening recommendation – physician's recommendation is one of the strongest predictors of having had a Pap test [41]
Lifestyle – smokers and obese persons adhere to Pap testing less frequently [49]