Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
Volume 21, Number 3, August 2010
pp. 851-861 | 10.1353/hpu.0.0343
This study examined factors affecting the receipt of both hepatitis B vaccination and screening in the Vietnamese American community of Philadelphia. Hepatitis B is endemic in Southeast Asia; individuals emigrating from endemic areas are at a particularly high risk of hepatitis B infection, resulting in a higher prevalence of liver cancer in the population. Participants recruited at Vietnamese community events in Philadelphia completed a self-administered written questionnaire. In a sample of 207 participants (93% foreign-born), over one half reported that they had not received either a screening or vaccination for hepatitis B in their lifetime. The number one predictor of receiving either service was that the participant was aware of the cancer risk posed by hepatitis B. This association remained strong even when controlling for socio-demographic factors. Based on this finding, future interventions targeting this population should include messages on the cancer risk associated with hepatitis B.