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Hispanic Women, Breast Cancer Screening and Preferences for Breast Health Information:
Unformatted Document Text:  Breast Cancer Screening 24 use the mass media. Yanovitzsky and Blitz (2000) also supported that mass media is particularly important for women without access to health care. Proactive women include women who recognize and understand the importance of breast health. They actively participate in all three types of breast cancer screening and actively search for information on breast cancer. These women were divided into two character types: proactive individualists and proactive collectivists. The difference is that individualists focus on their own needs, while collectivists practice screening and attempt to get others in the community involved. These character types have only been indirectly alluded to in the literature that discusses the importance of peer counselors (promatoras or consejeras) for increasing screening in the community at large (Castro et al., 1995; Navarro et al., 1995; Perez-Stable, Otero-Sabogal, Sabogal, & Naploes-Springer, 1996; Ramirez et al., 1995; Suarez et al., 1993). However, these character types have not been extensively examined in the literature. Research on their behaviors may help provide indications about how to encourage women to be more proactive. Existing, mainstream messages and channels already reach these types of women. Their concern is that information is accurate and up-to-date and comes from credible sources (e.g., health care professionals, health sites on the Internet, survivors, etc.) Implications of the Character Types The first implication of this research is that it helps to diversify Hispanic women and avoid stereotypes. Most research on Hispanic women tends to treat them as a homogeneous group that has cultural and structural explanations for not screening (e.g., Borrayo & Jenkins, 2001a, 2001b; Laws & Mayo, 1998; Longman et al., 1992; Perez-Stable et al., 1994; Perez- Stable et al., 1995; Zambrana et al., 1999). In all fairness, these scholars are interested in targeting a group of women that traditionally underutilized screening compared to other ethnic

Authors: DeVargas, Felicia., Sanchez, Christina. and Oetzel, John.
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Breast Cancer Screening 24
use the mass media. Yanovitzsky and Blitz (2000) also supported that mass media is particularly
important for women without access to health care.
Proactive women include women who recognize and understand the importance of breast
health. They actively participate in all three types of breast cancer screening and actively search
for information on breast cancer. These women were divided into two character types: proactive
individualists and proactive collectivists. The difference is that individualists focus on their own
needs, while collectivists practice screening and attempt to get others in the community involved.
These character types have only been indirectly alluded to in the literature that discusses the
importance of peer counselors (promatoras or consejeras) for increasing screening in the
community at large (Castro et al., 1995; Navarro et al., 1995; Perez-Stable, Otero-Sabogal,
Sabogal, & Naploes-Springer, 1996; Ramirez et al., 1995; Suarez et al., 1993). However, these
character types have not been extensively examined in the literature. Research on their behaviors
may help provide indications about how to encourage women to be more proactive. Existing,
mainstream messages and channels already reach these types of women. Their concern is that
information is accurate and up-to-date and comes from credible sources (e.g., health care
professionals, health sites on the Internet, survivors, etc.)
Implications of the Character Types
The first implication of this research is that it helps to diversify Hispanic women and
avoid stereotypes. Most research on Hispanic women tends to treat them as a homogeneous
group that has cultural and structural explanations for not screening (e.g., Borrayo & Jenkins,
2001a, 2001b; Laws & Mayo, 1998; Longman et al., 1992; Perez-Stable et al., 1994; Perez-
Stable et al., 1995; Zambrana et al., 1999). In all fairness, these scholars are interested in
targeting a group of women that traditionally underutilized screening compared to other ethnic


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