New York City (NYC) has one of the highest incidence and mortality rates of oral and pharyngeal cancer (OPC) for Hispanics of any major U.S. city. This qualitative assessment explores OPC awareness, attitudes, and screening practices among at-risk Hispanics, health care providers, and community leaders in a Hispanic neighborhood of NYC. Four focus groups (N=39) were conducted with at-risk Hispanics. Structured interviews were conducted with ten health care providers (four physicians, four dentists, two dental hygienists) and three key community leaders. Results showed major gaps in OPC awareness across all key stakeholders. Focus group participants expressed difficulty in accessing appropriate health care. Health care providers were not familiar with OPC prevention and early detection practices. Community leaders lacked the knowledge and resources necessary for advocating prevention and early detection for their constituencies. All participants reported cultural, social, and structural barriers to prevention. There is a need for developing a comprehensive, culturally competent health communication program that targets all key stakeholders in the at-risk Hispanic community of NYC.


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Print ISSN
pp. 833-846
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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