Shop Talk: An evaluation of a salon -based breast and cervical cancer intervention for African American women
Lay health education is recognized as an acceptable strategy used with communities and serves as a practical approach to health promotion. Currently in the United States, lay health education methods are widely used to recruit diverse populations for a variety of public health concerns, including recent application to a breast and cervical cancer screening intervention, Shop Talk. Shop Talk trained local African American beauticians to promote breast and cervical cancer awareness, distribute health literature, and increase awareness of the Alabama Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program among their clientele.
It is not clear how current techniques such as Shop Talk may potentially represent an effective approach for promoting the adoption of cancer screening practices and subsequently reducing morbidity and mortality. For efficient replication, lay health educator programs targeting breast and cervical cancer among African American women require a thorough understanding of specific program processes and activities. But there has been little published research thus far that has utilized process evaluation, specifically, as a method to gather and analyze this information.
Toward this end, the current study set out to reveal the complexities involved in implementing the Shop Talk program. The evaluation included both process and impact components. The main component of this study was process evaluation which focused on describing the program implementation including the beauticians training provided. The impact evaluation component complemented the process evaluation by focusing on assessment of program effectiveness with respect to changes in knowledge, attitudes, and screening behaviors among Shop Talk beauticians. Using a mixed methods design, the evaluation questions were: (1) What are the perceptions of Shop Talk staff, participants and partners about the program? (2) What were the differences regarding breast and cervical knowledge, attitudes, and screening behavior between Shop Talk beauticians and non-Shop Talk beauticians? (3) How did Shop Talk effect beauticians' interactions with their clients during the beautician-client education component? The data analysis revealed three key findings: First, that the program was implemented as planned, with some program areas that need modification. Second, there were no significant differences between Shop Talk beauticians and non-Shop Talk beauticians regarding breast and cervical cancer knowledge, attitudes, and screening behavior, regardless of race. Third, Shop Talk beauticians delivered the message as they were instructed; however, the Training Manual and session content requires some modification to accomplish the most significant impact on clients. Based on the results, several recommendations are suggested for future research.
0573: Public health
0453: Womens studies
0325: African Americans