Article

Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 27, Issue 4, pp 744-751

Lessons Learned in Developing a Culturally Adapted Intervention for African-American Families Coping with Parental Cancer

  • Maureen P. DaveyAffiliated withDepartment of Couple and Family Therapy, Drexel University Email author 
  • , Karni KissilAffiliated withDepartment of Couple and Family Therapy, Drexel University
  • , Laura LynchAffiliated withDepartment of Couple and Family Therapy, Drexel University
  • , La-Rhonda HarmonAffiliated withMultisystemic Therapy Services
  • , Nancy HodgsonAffiliated withSchool of Nursing, Johns Hopkins University

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Abstract

Prior clinical research supports the effectiveness of cancer support groups for cancer patients and their families, yet African-American families continue to be underrepresented in cancer support groups and in cancer clinical research studies. In order to fill this gap, we developed and evaluated a culturally adapted family support group for African-American families coping with parental cancer. We encountered unexpected challenges in overcoming barriers to recruitment, partnering with oncology providers, and building trust with the African-American community and African-American families coping with parental cancer. We describe actions taken during the two phases of this study and lessons learned along the way about recruiting and engaging African-American families in cancer support group studies, partnering with oncology providers, networking with the African-American community, and the importance of demonstrating cultural sensitivity to overcome the understandable historical legacy of mistrust.

Keywords

African-American families Family intervention Parental cancer