The prevalence of cervical cancer among Latinas in the United States is twice the rate of non-Latina white women (1,2,3,4,5), and Latinas have the second highest mortality rate related to this preventable disease. (1) There are various factors that contribute to this health disparity, (1,2,3,4,5) but one of the main factors that contributes to this high incidence and mortality rate, and the one we would like to address with our innovation, is the lack of culturally and linguistically appropriate information regarding regular pap smears and HPV vaccines. ACMA Social Marketing, through its fotonovela production arm, The Fotonovela Production Company, aims to remedy the lack of information disparity related to Latina women ages 18-26, via1the1development1of1the1 web1novela,1an1innovation1 of the educational fotonovela adapted and applied to the internet and its related social media. The timing of the adaptation of a culturally familiar entertainment education tool, namely the fotonovela (11,12,13,14,15) into a web-based tool is appropriate given the growing evidence that more and more young Latinos are accessing the web and using social media to find and share information. (6,7,8) The specific aims of this application are to: 1) produce a bilingual (Spanish and English) prototype of the web-novela innovation on evidence-based (9) information on cervical cancer prevention and early detection;and 2), demonstrate knowledge, gain and assess acceptability and feasibility of the innovation among Spanish and English dominant Latina women ages 18-26 who use the Internet or Smart Phones. For the latter aim we will convene ten focus group interviews, administer a pre and post test to assess knowledge gain and conduct a follow up discussion to explore and assess the values, beliefs, barriers and motivators that affect Latina's1decisions1to1get1Pap1tests and HPV vaccines. In addition to focus group interviews with our primary audience, we will conduct individual interviews with health professionals and gatekeepers working in the cervical cancer field to gain their insight and impressions on the1web-novela innovation. The fotonovela concept is a scientifically supported and culturally-compatible health communications medium (11,12,13,14,15) and adapting it to use on the web and its social media applications constitutes an innovation in both the area of multi-culturally competent health communications and the expanding field of multimedia health education.

Public Health Relevance

This project is significant, relevant and important to public health for three reasons: 1) The incidence and mortality rate of Latinas related to cervical cancer represents a startling health disparity and one that falls firmly under the1NCIs mission to eliminate the suffering and death due to cancer (17);2) The web-novela innovation as a health communications tool falls under one of the NCI s stated areas of interest for 2010 as having potential for having the largest impact in improving prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer {16);and 3) This work will contribute to the body of research related to using the internet and social media for public health education and to find innovative and linguistically and culturally appropriate ways to reach populations who suffer from health disparities.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Center for Chronic Disease Prev and Health Promo (NCCDPHP)
Small Business Innovation Research Grants (SBIR) - Phase I (R43)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-RPHB-C (10))
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Colley Gilbert, Brenda J
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Acma Social Marketing
Santa Fe
United States
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